Post Archives

Jun

05
2012

Zucchini Muffins

Marissa             0    

Every year I make a few batches of zucchini bread/muffins. I just grab whatever baking book I have or do a search online. All the recipes have been good, but haven’t been the recipe. Until now. I’ve made, and tweaked, this one 4 times already in the short time we’ve been in zucchini season this year. This is it. This is the one. Adapted from The Cook’s Illustrated Cookbook.

Makes 12 muffins

1 lb zucchini
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground allspice*
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
6 tbsp butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 tbsp lemon juice

Preheat oven the 350°F and grease a muffin tin.

Grate the zucchini and thoroughly squeeze it in a kitchen towel (put the grated zucchini on the towel and wring it out over the sink).

Sift together all the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, allspice and salt) in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, butter, eggs, yogurt, and lemon juice until smooth.

Gently fold the zucchini and the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until just combined. Fill muffin tins to about 3/4 full.

Bake for about 20 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck in the middle of one comes out clean. Let the muffins cool in the tin for 5-10 minutes before turning out on a wire rack.

*For some reason, I don’t always have allspice on hand. I’ve used the combination of 1/3 cinnamon, 1/3 cloves, 1/3 nutmeg. I’ve even done that substitution with this exact recipe and it was great.

 

0 comments

Jun

05
2012

Chunky Zucchini Soup

Marissa             2    

This recipe could be used with any variety of summer squash. You can also easily make a half batch if you aren’t struggling with the zucchini glut – this is just one of my go-to recipes for those times when the fridge is simply overflowing. It’s adapted from a recipe in Simply Delicious Vegetarian by Carla Bardi.

serves 6

1/4 cup olive oil
1 small onion, finely diced (~1/2 cup)
4 lbs zucchini, diced
5-6 cups stock
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
1 tbsp finely chopped basil
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Heat the oil in a large pot and saute the onion until soft, about 4 minutes.

Add the zucchini and saute for another 5 minutes. Add the stock (start with the lower amount – you can add more later) and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, until the zucchini is tender.

Add the eggs, stirring rapidly as you pour them in so as to break it up as it cooks. Add the herbs and parmesan and salt to taste. I prefer to either use homemade stock or a jarred version called Better than Bullion (the vegetable base). It’s plenty salty, but you may find that you need to add salt if yours is not. Enjoy!

2 comments

May

24
2012

Fried Squash Blossoms

Marissa             0    

I seem to somehow forget every year just how delicious these are. you can adapt this recipe in an infinite number of ways! They can be appetizers or part of a hearty meal.

Batter:

1 egg
1/4 cup flour
1-2 tbsp milk
1/2 tsp salt

6 fresh squash blossoms

Filling and oil for frying

Heat at least an inch of oil in a skillet for deep frying.

Beat the egg and slowly stir in the flour to form a smooth mixture. Add enough milk to make a batter that will easily coat the delicate flowers. Stir in the salt and set aside.

Cut out the stamen (the pollen coated part that sticks up in the middle) of each flower and gently swish in cold water if they seem dirty or buggy. You want the flowers to be perfectly dry for frying so you may need to do with in advance.

Fill the flower with the filling of your choice. I prefer farm fresh goat mozzarella of course! I just slice into 1/2″ pieces and fill, leaving enough room to twist the end of the flower closed.

While holding the end of the flower closed, twirl the it in the batter until evenly coated and the tip is somewhat stuck together (it’s ok if it opens some during frying…depending on your filling!). Fry them a few at a time for about 2 minutes per side or until they are golden.

Let drain over paper towels (I like to put fried food on a cooling rack over paper towels so they don’t sit in the oil) and serve immediately.

There are innumerable cheese-and-herb fillings to try and I’ve tried risotto (a favorite!) and a spinach mixture. The possibilities are endless…enjoy!

0 comments

May

24
2012

Summer Squash

Marissa             0    

JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC

Storage:

You should store your summer squash in a perforated plastic bag for about a week. You don’t want excess moisture building up on the vegetable, so wipe them dry if they are getting wet.

For squash blossoms, you will want to use them as soon as possible, no more than 2 days after getting them. They actually keep best at 50°F (for a week!) but unless you have a root cellar, you will probably have to put them in the fridge and simply use them quickly.

Varieties:

Summer squash takes on many different shapes and forms. We typically grow a wide variety and 2012 is no different. They are slowly starting to ripen and we will update with more variety pictures as they come in!

Patty Pan

Black Beauty Zucchini

Magda Squash

Yellow Straightneck

Squash Blossoms

0 comments

May

09
2012

Summer Squash Souffle

Marissa             2    

(serves 4-6)

5 or 6 crookneck squash – about 2 lbs
4 tbsp butter
1 cup finely diced onion
2 eggs
pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp butter

 Dice the squash into 1 inch cube and steam in for 15-20 minutes – until very soft.  I recently purchased a new cookware set.  We are installing an induction stove soon and needed to replace a lot of our older cookware.  I love our new stainless steel set – it has the best double decker steamer!

Meanwhile, heat the 4 tbsp of butter over medium heat in a skillet.  Cook the onions until soft and translucent but not brown.

Once the squash is tender, mash it into smooth puree with a fork and place in a fine colander to drain as much of the liquid as possible.

While draining, separate the egg.  I use the method of moving the yolk back and forth in the egg shell halves.  Recently, I’ve been using duck eggs for the majority of my egg needs.  Turns out, it can be rather hard to separate the white fromthe yolk.  You tend to have to “cut” the white free.  It’s very thick!

Beat the yolk with the nutmeg, salt and a few grinds of pepper.  I once heard Martha Stewart (yes, I’m a fan!) say something along the lines that you never know how much sawdust is in your ground spices.   Errr…ever since, I’ve ground my own nutmeg.  I don’t use it often and freshly ground even from “old” nuts seems to be more potent than preground that sits around for along time.

Once the squash is drained, add it and the onions to the yolk mixture.

Beat the egg white until it forms stiff peaks.  Fold gently but thoroughly into the squash mixture.

Pour the mixture into a 1 quart baking dish greased with 1 tbsp of butter and bake in  preheated oven at 350F for 40 minutes.

And enjoy!

2 comments