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Wednesday, August 03, 2005 

Use that squash!

August is here and that means that here in New England if you live in a small town you need to roll up your car windows and lock your doors if you stop at the store of post office. If you don't, you're going to come back to your car and find it filled up with bags of Zucchini.
Maybe its that way all over the country, but that has been the joke around where I live since I was kid. Everyone seems to plant Zucchini and it is all ready at the same time, causing people to desperately look for ways to dispose of it. Dumping it on other people is one way, I guess.

Peggy Grodinsky in the Houston Chronicle has an article today on how you can creatively use this vegetable.

She lists a couple of her favorite ways to enjoy Zucchini:

• Grilled: Slice zucchini lengthwise with a mandolin. Paint the thin "ribbons" lightly with good extra-virgin olive oil, then grill on both sides until golden. Squeeze a bit of lemon over them and add another drizzle of olive oil, if you like. Dust with a shower of chopped herbs (basil and mint work nicely). Salt and pepper to taste.

• Fried zucchini sandwiches: This treat is described by Lidia Bastianich in her new book, Lidia's Family Table (Knopf, $35). Use a mandolin to slice zucchini lengthwise into thin ribbons. Dredge the slices in seasoned flour, dip in beaten eggs, then fry in a small amount of canola oil. Drain the strips on paper towels. When you've got enough, pile them into a crusty roll with tomato slices, fresh basil and mayonnaise.

There are several other recipes in the article as well for ways to use all the excess squash should you make the mistake of leaving your car open in the summer in New England.