*Dave Barry says you can’t grow just one zucchini. Minutes after you plant a single seed, hundreds of zucchini will barge out of the ground and sprawl around the garden, menacing the other vegetables. At night, you will be able to hear the ground quake as more and more zucchinis erupt.

Sound like an outtake from The Twilight Zone?  It isn’t.  Neither is Marge Piercy’s poem.

 

ATTACK OF THE SQUASH PEOPLE

And thus the people every year

in the valleys of humid July
did sacrifice themselves
to the long green phallic god
and eat and eat and eat.

They’re coming on, they’re on us,
the long striped gourds, the silky
babies, the hairy adolescents,
the lumpy vast adults
like the trunks of green elephants.
Recite fifty zucchini recipes!

Zucchini tempura. Creamed soup.
Saute with olive oil and cumin,
tomatoes, onion. Frittata.
Casserole of lamb. Baked
topped with cheese. Marinated,
stuffed, stewed, driven
through the heart like a stake.

Get tired of old friends. They too
have gardens and full trunks.
Look for newcomers, befriend them
in the post office, unload
on them and run. Stop tourists
in the street. Take truckloads
to Boston. Give to your Red Cross.
Beg on the highways. Please
take my zucchini, I have a crippled
mother at home with heartburn.

Sneak out before dawn, to drop
them in other people’s gardens,
in baby buggies at churchdoors.
Shot, smuggling zucchini into
mailboxes, a federal offense.

With a suave reptilian glitter
you bask among your raspy
fronds sudden and huge as
alligators. You give and give
too much, like summer days
limp with heat, thunderstorms
bursting their bags on our heads,
as we salt and freeze and pickle
for the too little to come.

 

Unknown-1

‘Tis the season of the Great Zucchini Caper. Beware the overzealous gardener. She wears a supernova smile, is generous to a fault, and favors the drop-and-run.

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Did you know there’s a holiday for the zany zucchini? It’s called Sneak Some Zucchini Onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Night.

 

Unknown-4The brainchild of Tom Roy, it’s American-Idolish tomfoolery.

The drop spot is up to you ~

back seat, back porch, back forty.

 

 

Or any out-of-the-way place that has a sign posted. Unknown-6

 

 

 

 

Need to ward off stray dogs while you jog? Speak softly and carry a big zucchini.

Got puffy eyes? Zucchini is the new cucumber.

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Think like Martha ~ spray them gold and arrange those glamazons into a festive wreath.

 

Unknown-7

I have a love/hate relationship with this particular summer squash. With zucchini, as with most things, it’s the dose that makes the poison. So when life hands me too many zucchini, I go to Pinterest.

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Pinterest connects everyone on the planet through whatever they find interesting. It’s a platform of inspiration and sharing, visual, addictive, and full of ideas for your summer surplus.

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The ideas, like the squashes themselves, run riot. Grilled, fried, breaded, baked, sweet, savory, raw, sliced, diced, stuffed, hot, cold, pickled, marinated. In a breakfast omelet, luncheon salad, hot or cold soup, sandwich, brownies and breads.

Here’s a slap-up and savory little sweet. Zucchini, peanut butter, and flaxseed ~ it’s totally dinner. Love between the teeth, I kid you not.

Flourless_Peanut_Butter_Zucchini_Brownies2
Thanks, Alexis. Visit her blog Hummusapien.

 

FLOURLESS PEANUT BUTTER ZUCCHINI BROWNIES

 

Easy (one bowl, seven ingredients) and healthy (no refined sugar, flour, butter, or oil).

¾ cup natural peanut butter
¼ cup pure maple syrup
1 cup shredded zucchini (don’t squeeze out water)
¼ cup cocoa powder
2 tbsp ground flaxseed
¾ tsp baking soda
¼ cup chocolate chips plus more just because 🙂

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a loaf pan with cooking spray.
Place all ingredients except chocolate chips in a large bowl. Stir until well combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
Dump mixture into loaf pan and use a spatula to spread evenly in pan or wet your hands and pat it down. Sprinkle top with a handful or two of chocolate chips.

Bake for 30 minutes.
Allow brownies to completely cool (refrigerate overnight in the pan once cool) before slicing.

Zucchini_Cartoon_Conde_Naste

Got a recipe for that gone-rampant plenitudinous veggie?

Share it here. Oh, and leave the porch light on.

 

Toni 8/18/16

*Dave Barry makes his living weaving unrelated subplots, criminal activities, and the absurdities of South Florida into best selling books and Pulitzer Prize-winning columns.

Oh, Say Can You Eat?

One of my favorite Erma Bombeck quotes ~

You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.

Hello-July-Flag-America-wallpaper

 

So, what are you bringing to the∗∗star-spangled∗∗party∗∗?

 I’m thinking pizookie!

Toni 7/1/16

How do you show your patriotism? I favor sunshine and ravioli. Love that Louie!

WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE: DINNERTIME

Dough
dough_resting

Whoa!

IMG_3430

Want it for dinner? 

The recipe that results in this marvel is from Jim Lahey, owner of Sullivan Street Bakery.

 

BNIunwRacAv_vCsHLYa9ujMSS2GEp2QTb2Xnj0mPPI4,LUkNYJwvRM6gbMHj-KLWQXWK-0GwRvhk56rFKYgraec,W43sdepQaAVw4Gp39UV532Wt1PzvlRsj9kEzPCdfe5sYes, you can do this at home.

No kneading, no special ingredients, equipment or techniques. It takes little work but a lotta time. Plan on 24 hours to beget this beauty, but most is unattended waiting (happy hour, anyone?) while the dough slowly ferments. The result is, trust me, a bang up loaf. 

A little wine.

A little cheese.

 Dinnertime.

 

INGREDIENTS:

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, more for dusting
¼ teaspoon instant yeast
1 ¼ teaspoons salt
Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed
PREPARATION:
In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and salt. Add 1 5/8 cups water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hours, preferably about 18, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.
Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.
Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is O.K. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.

Toni 4/16/16