Zucchini

More Than Zoodles

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Ready for zucchini? We are! Zucchini has exploded in popularity lately as a low-carb pasta substitute, but you don’t need a fancy spiralizer to enjoy this wonderful squash. Its tendency to soak up surrounding flavors makes it great sauteéd, roasted, tossed in a soup, layered in a casserole, fried, or shredded up in a delicious zucchini bread. And, of course, if you do have a spiralizer, feel free to enjoy it in the form of zucchini noodles (zoodles!) or as the base to a zucchini salad. (Don’t have a spiralizer but still want to see what all the hype is about? Consider using this technique to make your own zoodles without one.)

For best results in your favorite zucchini recipes, choose zucchini that has a bright color, smooth, unblemished skin, and still has part of the stem attached (this means it will store longer). Large zucchinis tend to be pulpy, so opt for smaller options when you can (6-8 inches). Keep it in the fridge for up to ten days.

Did you know? Zucchini is a type of summer squash, which means it is harvested while the skin is still soft, before the fruit has fully matured. Zucchini itself comes in many different forms, including yellow and round varieties, but summer squash in general is super diverse, coming in all kinds of shapes and colors. Our vendors bring their favorites, so make sure to stop by our markets to discover new squash possibilities! You can check them out in advance here.

Preserving Zucchini

Canning

Oregon State University recommends against canning zucchini by itself for safety reasons, but you can always pickle it or use it to make faux canned pineapple.

Dehydrating

To dehydrate zucchini in a dehydrator, cut it up however you’d like and remove any seeds that may have formed. Place it in a single layer on your dehydrator tray and dry at 125°F until the zucchini is brittle.

To dehydrate zucchini in an oven, preheat your oven to its lowest setting. Prepare the zucchini like you would for a dehydrator and layer it on a baking sheet covered in parchment paper. Place it in the oven with the door propped open about an inch for 4-6 hours, until the zucchini is brittle.

To reconstitute dried zucchini, soak it in equal parts water for up to two hours (depending on the size of your zucchini pieces).

Freezing

Set a pot of salted water on the stove to boil and set up a bowl of ice water. While waiting for the water to boil, wash the zucchini and slice it into ½ inch rounds. Add the rounds to the boiling water for 1-2 minutes, until they are brightly colored and a little tender. Immediately drain the slices and put them in the ice water (to stop them from cooking further). Once the slices are cool, you can drain them and store them in the freezer.

You can also freeze raw grated zucchini, but keep in mind that liquid will come out of it when it defrosts. You’ll probably want to drain it before using it.

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Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

Recipe adapted from V Monte on Allrecipes.com

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

  • 3 eggs

  • 1 cup vegetable oil

  • 2 ¼ cups sugar

  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 2 cups grated zucchini

  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Preparation

Grease and flour two 8x4 inch bread pans. Preheat oven to 325° F.

Stir flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon together in a bowl.

Beat eggs, oil, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl. Add dry ingredients and beat well. Stir in zucchini, nuts, and chocolate chips until evenly combined. Pour batter into the greased bread pans.

Bake for 40 to 60 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a rack for 20 minutes. Remove from bread pan and cool completely.

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RecipesLiz Connor