Zucchini Recipes

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Zucchini Radiatore (Vegetarian Pasta Recipe) Recipe

I love the vegetables my husband has been harvesting this season. We've had lovely zucchini so far. I've already used the zucchini flowers and stuffed them with risotto, and today I sautéed the zucchini with radiatore pasta. Lulu also pulled plenty of red Creole onions from the ground, so I used them to flavor the vegetarian pasta dish.

If you're able to plant your own vegetables, you should try zucchini. The young ones are sweet and more tender. They're fairly easy to plant, and if you take good care of them, they can be prolific.

You could pair any other pasta with the veggies in this dish, but I think the lace-shaped pasta looks very fancy. To make the dish a little healthier than my usual pasta dishes, I added very little cheese (I used Asiago for its strong flavor) and instead used enoki mushrooms, which resemble strings of cheese. It’s a great way to trick the kids, both little and big, into eating healthy!

Zucchini Pasta Recipe with Picture


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Risotto Stuffed Zucchini Flowers Recipe

Zucchini risotto is another of the many variations of the classic Italian rice dish. To add a little twist, I stuffed the risotto into edible zucchini flowers from our garden. I asked Lulu to plant zucchini in the garden at the beginning of March and I've been patiently waiting for at least 12 zucchini flowers to blossom. Early this morning, my little munchkin and I ran to the garden and found the flowers blooming. They made a beautiful decoration for our dinner meal, and are a wonderful sign of the season. Spring is definitely in bloom.

If zucchini flowers are hard to come by in your area, you could always serve the risotto as is. You’ll miss out on the “oohs” and “aahs” though! By itself zucchini can be bland, so I added some chimichurri sauce and pecorino cheese to enhance the flavor and aroma. This is especially important if you don’t have the flowers on hand. I didn’t want to add nuts (one person in my family is allergic to them), but they would be a welcome addition as well.

Stuffed Zucchini Flowers


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Ratatouille Recipe

Ratatouille

01.21.10 by Jackie

For most, the name of this dish evokes dreams of animated rodents scurrying around a Parisian restaurant kitchen. In reality though, ratatouille is a French stewed vegetable dish from the seaside city of Nice. I make my version with zucchini (courgette in French), eggplant (aubergine), olives, capers, bell peppers, mushrooms and tomatoes.  With the exception of the tomatoes, everything is fresh. I prefer canned tomatoes in this dish because they tend to be sweeter (especially during the winter season).

Given the abundance of fresh vegetables, this dish would be perfect for the summer. In fact, I make it often when the vegetables in my garden ripen. I also like it in the winter though, because it's excellent comfort food. The flavor of the veggies marries wonderfully with the herbs and spices. My family always ends up fighting over the "broth" at the bottom of the bowl.

Ratatouille can be eaten with just about anything. Crusty bread and rice are common options, but my personal favorite delivery device is a savory crêpe. However it makes it to your mouth though, you'll be happy it did!


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Roasted Buckwheat with Sauteed Vegetables (Kasha) Recipe

Roasted buckwheat (kasha) is a staple starch in Eastern Europe. I serve it once in a while in place of rice or potatoes. I especially make it for the vegetarians in the house to provide a little variety to their diet. Buckwheat is very healthy, and has a nutty flavor and lentil-like texture.

This preparation in particular is reminiscent of a daal recipe that is served dry as opposed to soupy. If you've never had buckwheat before, it's certainly worth a try!


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Goat Ricotta Cheese and Pine Nut Stuffed Baby Zucchini Recipe

I typically serve stuffed zucchini as a side dish. It is very similar to my eggplant rollup recipe. It's very creamy and hearty and is a great accompaniment to red meat, such as a steak or some lamb chops.

What I love most about this dish is that it looks very healthy. But appearances can be deceiving. The green zucchini is the perfect cover for all the cheese and pine nuts that are stuffed inside. It may not be that good for you, but it surely is good. If you still feel guilty after eating this or any other of my recipes, do what the French do: chase after a bus, a train or a metro. I did this for the first 24 years of my life. If that's not possible, you can always go for a walk.

 

 


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