Got zucchini? If you're like us, you've got plenty of them and are looking for new recipe ideas

With the first one, you baked zucchini bread. And then a veggie lasagna. But they kept coming, fast and furious, the latest bigger than the one before. It's the home gardener's lament: what to do with this prolific vegetable?

So you go where you always do — the internet — and find "59 Zucchini Recipes to Enjoy All Summer Long" from Country Living and consider everything from breads to pizzas to fritters. And then there are the simple conversions — eggplant parmesan becomes zucchini parm.

But we think you can do better, so The Day's Test Kitchen has come up with these tried-and-true uses for your bounty.

 

Zucchini Gratin

Ingredients

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, plus extra for topping

1 pound yellow onions, cut in 1/2 and sliced (3 large)

2 pounds zucchini, sliced 1/4-inch thick (4 zucchini)

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup hot milk

3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs

3/4 cup grated Gruyere

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Melt the butter in a very large (12-inch) saute pan and cook the onions over low heat for 20 minutes, or until tender but not browned. Add the zucchini and cook, covered, for 10 minutes, or until tender. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg and cook uncovered for 5 more minutes. Stir in the flour. Add the hot milk and cook over low heat for a few minutes, until it makes a sauce. Pour the mixture into an 8 by 10-inch baking dish.

Combine the bread crumbs and Gruyere and sprinkle on top of the zucchini mixture. Dot with 1 tablespoon of butter cut into small bits and bake for 20 minutes, or until bubbly and browned.

From The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

— Tim Cotter

 

Company Rice with Beans

1 tablespoon oil

1 medium onion, coarsely chopped (2/3 cup)

2 cloves garlic, crushed or finely minced

1 hot chile pepper, seeds and ribs removed and finely chopped (optional)

2 medium tomatoes, finely diced

1 medium zucchini (about ½ pound), coarsely chopped

½ teaspoon oregano

1 16-ounce can beans (kidney, white, pink, black or garbanzo), drained

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup shredded cheese (cheddar, pepper jack, whatever you'd like)

If serving with rice, start that to cooking, following package directions. If you're using brown rice, you might want to cook it about half way through before starting the bean mixture so the timing works out right.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet, add the onion, garlic and chile, if using, and sauté until soft.

Add the tomatoes, zucchini and oregano. Cover the skillet and simmer for about 5 minutes or until the vegetables are tender-crisp.

Add the beans and simmer the mixture, stirring it occasionally until it is heated through and the zucchini is cooked to your liking. Season with salt and pepper.

To serve, spoon the vegetable mixture over hot rice or serve it all by itself in a bowl, sprinkling the cheese over the top.

Original recipe from "Jane Brody's Good Food Book."

— Jill Blanchette

 

 

 

Chocolate Nut Zucchini Cake

4 squares unsweetened baking chocolate melted (original recipe called for pre-melted unsweetened chocolate which has been discontinued)

3 cups unsifted flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

4 eggs

3 cups sugar

1 1/2 cups salad oil

3-4 cups grated zucchini

6 ounces of chocolate chips

1 cup of chopped nuts

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Melt baking chocolate. Grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan or a 12- by 15-inch baking pan.

Sift dry ingredients except the sugar. In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs until fluffy, adding the sugar gradually. Add the oil and melted chocolate. At low speed add sifted, dry ingredients. Mix until smooth. Add grated squash, nuts and chocolate chips. Mix well. Pour into pan and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until cake surface springs back. Cool and frost. It's great with cream cheese frosting.

— Ann Baldelli (original recipe clipped from The Day some time in the '80s)

 

Corn-zucchini-cheese souffle

Ingredients:

2 medium ears sweet corn, to yield about 1 cup kernels

2 medium zucchini (about 1 1/2 pounds), grated

2 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided use

2 green onions, thinly sliced

6 large eggs

1/4 teaspoon each: pepper, grated nutmeg

1 1/4 cups half-and-half or whole milk

1 cup cubed cambozola, fontina or Brie cheese

Directions:

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 2 1/2-quart souffle dish; dust lightly with flour. Cut corn from cobs; place kernels in a large bowl.

2. Place zucchini in a colander set into the sink; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt; toss. Let stand, 30 minutes. Rinse and drain well; blot dry with paper towels or wring in a clean cloth towel. Add zucchini and green onions to corn kernels.

3. Meanwhile, separate eggs; let stand at room temperature, 30 minutes. After standing time, beat egg yolks well in a small bowl. Add to corn-zucchini mixture.

4. Stir in the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus the pepper and nutmeg; gradually stir in half-and-half or milk. Stir in cheese.

5. In a large bowl, beat egg whites with an electric mixer on high speed until stiff but not dry. Gently stir a fourth of the egg whites into the corn mixture. Fold in remaining egg whites. Transfer to prepared dish.

6. Bake until top is puffed and center appears set, 45-50 minutes.

— Chicago Tribune

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