Dear Lisa: Besides zucchini bread and casseroles, do you have any interesting recipes for using zucchini? We are running out of ideas (but not zucchini)! -- Vicki S.
Dear Vicki: Once it starts producing, it doesn't take long for squash and zucchini to reach critical mass. Here are a few recipes for enjoying your bumper crop.
CREAMY ZUCCHINI SOUP
1 pound young zucchini
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 and three fourths cups chicken broth
Croutons or chopped chives
Scrub zucchini and slice thin. Heat butter and add zucchini, shallots and garlic. Cover tightly and simmer 10 minutes. Stir occasionally, do not let mixture brown. Spoon mixture into blender. Add curry powder, salt, cream and broth and blend for 30 seconds.
Serve hot with croutons or cold with chopped chives. Serves 4.
2/3 cup thinly sliced carrots
5 medium zucchini, thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon caraway seed (optional)
1 tablespoon chopped onion
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/3 cup salad oil
2/3 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/2 cup chopped celery
Cook carrots until slightly soft; drain well. In large bowl combine all ingredients and refrigerate 6 hours or overnight. Serves 6-8.
SPINACH STUFFED ZUCCHINI
3 medium zucchini
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, cooked and squeezed dry
4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
Wash zucchini. Cut off stem end and discard. Drop zucchini in boiling, salted water. Cover, reduce heat and cook 10-12 minutes. Drain and cool.
Melt butter in saucepan. Add flour and stir until smooth. Add milk and garlic powder, stirring constantly. Cook until thickened.
Cut zucchini in half lengthwise and remove pulp, leaving a firm shell. Salt and pepper each shell. Chop pulp and combine pulp and spinach with cream sauce. Stuff shells with spinach mixture. Sprinkle top with bacon and cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes. Serves 6.
* Lisa Fritz, a longtime Bryan food and nutrition educator, answers readers' questions about food, cooking and recipes. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.