Growing in the Garden – Zucchini

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I had the wonderful opportunity on Saturday to lead a cooking class at the Santa Clarita Central Park Community Garden.  I was so impressed with the beauty of the gardens!  Not to mention the abundance of vegetables growing, including lots of zucchini, summer crookneck squash and pattypans. The day began with Diane Benjamin, Master Gardner, giving some great information on harvesting vegetables. Summer squash is ready for picking 4 -6 days after pollination.  Who knew???

There are so many ways to enjoy summer squash and zucchini.  Grilled, raw, in salads, pickled, breads – all tasty and healthy.  Fritters are a quick and easy way to use zucchini.  Great alone, as a side dish, or even in place of English muffins in Eggs Benedict.  We whipped some up there in the garden.

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ZUCCHINI FRITTERS

  • 1 lb zucchini (approx. 2 medium zucchini)
  • 1 tsp kosher salt +
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • ½ c flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 Tbs basil, minced
  • fresh ground pepper
  • olive oil

Method:

  1. Grate zucchini on large side of box grater.  Put zucchini into large bowl, toss with salt and allow to sit 10 minutes.
  2. Squeeze liquid from zucchini, pressing it against a strainer or colander with a wooden spoon.  Alternatively, put into cheesecloth and wring out liquid. Taste zucchini – add salt if necessary.
  3. Mix flour and baking powder.  Set aside.
  4. Mix eggs, basil, shallots, pepper and flour mix.  Add zucchini and stir batter.
  5. Heat olive oil in large heavy skillet over medium high heat.  When oil is shimmering, drop zucchini batter by spoonfuls into oil, careful not to crowd in pan.  Cook until edges are golden, approx.. 3 -4 minutes.  Carefully turn to cook other side, approx. 2-3 minutes more.  Remove to towel lined plate to drain excess oil.  Fritters may be held in 200° while cooking the remaining batter.
  6. Serve.

YOGURT SAUCE FOR FRITTERS

  • 1 c greek or plain yogurt
  • 1 Tbs lemon juice
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • salt & pepper to taste

Method:

Mix all ingredients together.

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A big thank you to the SCV Garden Club for hosting this morning of garden classes and for inviting me to join in!  For more information on the SCV Community Garden, please visit their website. http://communitygardensofsantaclarita.com

TFK

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