Posts tagged zucchini

RIP Zucchini

Friday I walked out into my backyard to be confronted with this:

Zucchini. RIP

A very sad looking wilted zucchini that had happened in a matter of hours. I figured I had under-watered so I proceeded to give it a good watering. The next day it looked the same, so I took a closer look. This is what I saw:

Zucchini. RIP

Nasty. Nasty. Nasty. Squash vine borers ate holes into the main stem of my plant, proceeded to eat the plant from the inside out and filled it with their excrement. Yuck. Yuck. Yuck. I couldn’t save my poor zucchini plant that had just bloomed with about 9 more blooms and buds. The borers had done their damage and it was irreversible. Apparently these pests are very common in Austin as my friend Jenn has lost three of her four zucchini plants to these yucky bugs this year too. There aren’t many organic pest control methods that I’ve read about, but I’d love to know if any of you readers have a preventative measure to protect your zucchini from these things. And I’m wondering if it’s already too late in the growing season to plant another zucchini plant in its place. Fellow gardener friends, tell me your experiences!

fruits from the garden

Just a quick photo update! My patio tomatoes are starting to produce a bunch of fruit:

Patio Tomatoes

And so are my little yellow pear tomatoes:
Yellow Pear Tomatoes

The zucchini is taking over, but also providing many growing veggies:

And my blackberry plant is fully leafed out! Yay!
Blackberry Plant

Zucchini, Cherry Tomato and Fresh Ricotta Pasta

Cooking Light has hit the nail on the head with their budget cooking section lately. This month’s issue had ‘feed 4 for less than $10’, and this recipe totaled in at $6.48. Pretty awesome!

If you haven’t tried making your own ricotta before, this is the perfect recipe to try it out on. I mean, really, you just boil whole milk and buttermilk together and drain. It’s that simple and it really doesn’t take much time at all. And then you can tell everyone that you make your own cheese. Sounds impressive, doesn’t it? Well, not only is it impressive, it’s delicious as well. It has such a distinctly different taste than the stuff you buy at the grocery store. It’s just fresher, creamier, yummier. Don’t try to sub the store bought stuff in this recipe either. There are so few ingredients that you need the ricotta to be excellent.

I am pretty excited about using this recipe once I can put all of the veggies out of my own garden in the backyard but for the time being, I had to make due with what my local HEB had. I subbed basil in place of the mint, mainly because I think basil is the best herb in existence, and I thought it was wonderful. This was a great fresh, simple, quick, summery pasta dish.

Recipe for Zucchini, Cherry Tomato and Fresh Ricotta Pasta

Zucchini, Cherry Tomato and Fresh Ricotta Pasta

Zucchini, Bacon and Gruyere Quiche

This is one of the items I tried out for the baby shower and it received rave reviews! The recipe calls for a premade crust, but I decided to try my hand at making my own. I’m not sure if this is my favorite crust recipe, but this is the one I used…

* 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 teaspoon sugar
* 1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
* 1 large egg
* 1 teaspoon cold water
* 1 large egg white, lightly beaten

For crust:
Blend flour, salt, and sugar in processor. Add butter; using on/off turns, process until coarse meal forms. Whisk 1 egg and 1 teaspoon cold water in small bowl; add to flour mixture. Using on/off turns, process just until moist clumps form. Transfer to work surface and knead gently until dough comes together, about 4 turns. Form into ball; flatten into disk. Wrap in plastic and chill 1 hour. Do ahead Dough can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.

Butter 9 1/2-inch round fluted tart pan with removable bottom. Roll out dough on lightly floured surface to 12-inch round. Transfer dough to pan, pressing onto bottom and up sides of pan; trim any excess dough. Chill 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Butter large square of foil and press, butter side down, onto crust. Freeze for 30 minutes. Bake 20 minutes. Using fork, pierce bottom of crust all over (about 10 times). Bake until golden, about 10 minutes. Cool. Do ahead Can be baked 6 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature

I fought with this crust quite a bit and ended up using more water than the recipe asked for to make the dough come together. I’m going to blame this on my not having a pastry blender and using my food processor instead! It ended up tasting fine.

The filling was absolutely delicious! What’s not to love about bacon and cheese (and zucchini too)? Overall, a great recipe for any meal.

Recipe for Zucchini, Bacon and Gruyere Quiche

Zucchini + Goat Cheese = Love

We had a successful little dinner party last night and I will be progressively posting the recipes that I tried out on everyone since they were all pretty delicious. These little tarts were awesome and really easy to make. Gotta love a recipe where you don’t have to make the pie crust from scratch! It’s also a good way to make use of the abundance of zucchini that’s available in the summer time.

Recipe for Mini Zucchini and Goat Cheese Tarts

Zuchinni Goat Cheese Tarts
(Sorry this isn’t the best of pictures but I had to jump in and take it while people were trying it eat them!)