Zucchini Archive

Monday, August 9, 2010

zucchini and almond pasta salad

zucchini and almond pasta salad

And so, we’ve finally fled the coop. We headed out last weekend to a house we’ve rented (with enough spare bedrooms for grandparents to come and babysit catch up with their favorite grandson, because we are brilliant, friends, absolutely brilliant) and I’m dispatching from the beach this week. I’ve already had a dinner with friends that involved multiple formats of broiled cheese, several tastes of local wines, watched the sunset, had my first and second full night’s sleep in weeks, and now with the promise of Dunkin Donuts coffee and freckles in my near future, I have totally arrived.

goodbye, city! hello, farms!
long island wines
alex and boys, skipping stones

I can’t wait to cook off the books this week, do that kind of thing summer junkies like me live for, heading to one of the innumerable local markets, grabbing all of the corn, eggplant and tomatoes our large and tiny arms can haul and eating simple meals. Still, I did attempt to do a little precooking and had I not stayed out until 11 p.m. with these bad influences the night before and packing in a zombified frenzy the next morning, I might have even remembered to bring this pasta salad with me. Whoops.

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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

zucchini and ricotta galette

zucchini ricotta galette, served

I realized this week that it has been way, way too long since I made a galette. I remember being infatuated with them when I launched this site, uh, wow, hey, did you know this site is almost four years old? When did that happen? I was absolutely not paying attention. It’s kind of like when I was hanging out with the baby yesterday evening and he up and crawled over to the coffee table and pulled himself up to standing and, whoa, when did that happen? Who taught him that? Could you unteach him that, please? Thank you.

sliced zucchini
rolling out the dough

I digress: galettes! My galette obsession began with a wild mushroom and blue cheese galette a friend and I used to make every Christmas. It is unbelievably good, it will always be welcome, anywhere. Have you made it yet? You should. I moved onto a roasted butternut squash and caramelized onion galette the next fall and oh man, I would not kick that out of the kitchen for eating crackers. That’s how the saying goes, right? The next winter was all about Eastern Europe, with a cabbage and mushroom galette with chopped hard-boiled egg, dill and greens. I bet you didn’t know a little tart could be so filling, huh? And then, tsk-tsk, I apparently stopped making savory galettes and it’s such a shame because what each of these has in common is a crust so amazing, you will not believe it came out of your kitchen. Seriously. When I made it again yesterday and I was not sure I could tell it apart from store-bought puffed pastry. I’m not bragging, it’s a fine, fine recipe I adapted from an old Williams-Sonoma cookbook.

ready to crimp

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Thursday, July 9, 2009

lemony zucchini goat cheese pizza

lemony zucchini goat cheese pizza

I’ve been at a bit of a standstill in the kitchen this month. It’s not really a lack of ideas vexing me, but a lack of desire to spend any time in front of a stove or oven now that the weather is so delicious, I believe I at least owe it the courtesy of spending time out in it. Sure, there are savory tarts and summery salads and even another burger bun recipe on my agenda; there’s a cake in my fridge that’s so pretty I will not be the least bit offended if you mount a protest that I am waiting until next time to tell you about it, but I need to level with you: I have not cooked a real dinner for us in over a month. A month! Perhaps longer.

really simple homemade pizza dough
spreading the goat cheese

None of this has stopped me from bringing home mounds of produce each week from the markets. My current (boring) preggo cravings are green beans and summer squash, and I’ve made countless batches of this salad and this sauté but a proper meal, they are not. Today I staged an intervention with myself once and for all. I figure it can’t just be me that is unmotivated to cook a decent, light summer meal and that the only solution would be to create something worth rallying myself — and others — over.

yellow and green zucchini
lemony zucchini pizza

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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

kefta and zucchini kebabs

kefta and zucchini skewers

One of my favorite things about cooking is being surprised. As much fun as it is chasing some childhood recipe or flavor ideal I caught a whiff of at some restaurant, somewhere, nothing matches the surprise of finding a recipe that you’re not entirely sure will be your thing, trying it anyway and then spending the rest of the night going “this is good,” “wow, this is so good,” and “wow, I had no idea it would be this good.”

zucchini coinsmarinating

Well, that part is kind of boring to anyone but the person experiencing the delicious surprise but still, this recipe is one of those. I have to admit that my fearful-of-combining-sweet-and-savory husband has poisoned me a little, and when I see warm spices like cinnamon and allspice in a savory recipe, I’m doubtful I will like it. Not that it won’t work, per se, just that it won’t work for me. Even though a good part of the world adds these spices to their savory dishes and surely they can’t all be wrong.

mm, raw meatskewers

But these meatball skewers are awesome. Awe-some. And then some. I expect that some astute readers might have noticed that I rarely feature meat recipes; I’m not enthralled enough with it that I am easily impressed into trying new recipes. But when I am, well, hot damn. I didn’t think I could even like a meat anything this much, nonetheless a meatball. They’re spicy and juicy and delicious charred at the edges, and the minty yogurt sauce is the perfect contrast for the kefta as well as the zucchini skewers and I want more right now.

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Friday, June 27, 2008

zucchini strand spaghetti

zucchini strand spaghetti

Believe it or not, I’ve actually cooked dinner a few times this month. Like, three! Maybe even four. I don’t know, does a corn tortillas chmeared with refried beans, salsa and toasted with some shredded cheese on top count as dinner? Oh it does? Then definitely, most certainly four. We’re all about the refined eatin’ at the smittenkitchen.

zucchini strands

But this dish is a winner. In fact, if I weren’t working on a few humongous projects right now I would have made it again, maybe even twice. It’s the perfect antidote to the simultaneous and conflicting internal dialogue of “I’m craving a big bowl of spaghetti!” and “But it’s bathing suit season!” Also, it’s really nice to find ways to lighten up pasta when it is hot and sticky and borderline-rainy every single day and you’re beginning to believe that you might not get to the beach even once this summer, prepared or not.

whole wheat spaghetti

The recipe comes from Michael Chiarello and I’d seen him make it a few years ago on his Food Network show, back when they played it more than once a week, on Mondays, at 1 a.m. (Fine, I’m exaggerating, but that was indeed the last time I saw it, and it was DVRed .) It was one of those “here, I cook healthy too” episodes that always make me giggle because they usually so eloquently sum up our American confusion over what “healthy” actually means (see this cake for further evidence).

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