If you’re a veggie-lover, you’ve undoubtedly got boatloads of recipes for all your favorite zucchini dishes. But if the thought of eating zucchinis is not as appetizing to you, your only choice, it seems, is to find some recipes to make that zucchini taste less like they actually do. Here are two delicious dishes that will appeal to you if you’re not a fan of this green and slimy summer squash.
Pumpkin Zucchini Bread
Zucchini bread is the first thing everybody thinks of when it comes to getting rid of excess zucchini. Most recipes call for grated zucchini, insisting that the zucchini shreds will just “melt” into the batter. Well, they don’t, and it can be extremely off-putting to slice open your loaf and see little white sticks poking out. Luckily, there’s a recipe that calls for pureeing the zucchini instead of shredding it.
This recipe also uses pumpkin to disguise any hint of zucchini further. If you don’t have pumpkin, or you have a bunch of zucchini to use up, you can use a double portion of pureed zucchini in place of the pumpkin. Although the batter comes out bright green, the bread turns a reassuring brown once baked, and even the all-zucchini version just tastes of cinnamon and walnuts. To make this bread, mix three eggs, 1 cup vegetable oil, 2 cups sugar, one tablespoon vanilla, 1 cup canned pumpkin, and 1 cup pureed zucchini. Combine 3 cups flour, one teaspoon salt, one teaspoon baking soda,1/4 teaspoon baking powder, and1 tablespoon cinnamon, then stir into batter along with 1 cup chopped nuts—Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour (makes two loaves).
Zucchini Tomato Salad
If the thought of eating raw zucchini has ever crossed your mind for whatever reason, the answer is, yes, you can. As to whether you’d want to, in this recipe for a zucchini-tomato salad, you might be surprised to find out how innocuous it tastes. Blending it with other, tastier veggies adds some extra crunch as well as nutrition. To make this salad, chop up two zucchinis. Don’t bother peeling them, since the skin is soft and has no bitter taste. Plus, it contains essential nutrients. Mix the zucchini with two pints of halved cherry tomatoes, one chopped red onion, and a bunch of parsley, also chopped. Whisk together the juice of one lime and four tablespoons of olive oil and drizzle the dressing over the salad.
Zucchine alla scapece
This recipe uses two time-tested techniques to make just about anything taste better: deep-frying and pickling in vinegar. Zucchine Alla Scapece originates in Naples, and “Scapece” may be a Neapolitanization of the Spanish word for “pickled”: escabeche. This recipe is pretty simple to make.
Slice your zucchini into coins about half an inch thick, then salt them generously and let them drain for half an hour. Rinse, then dry the zucchini. Dice a few cloves of garlic and fry it in hot oil for about 30 seconds before removing and setting it aside. Fry the zucchini slices in small batches in the now garlic-infused oil until they’re golden-brown on both sides. After all of the zucchini is fried, place it in a shallow dish, sprinkle it with the garlic, then drizzle it with a few tablespoons of red or white wine vinegar. (Balsamic works, too.) Season with salt and pepper and finish off with some chopped fresh mint. Let the zucchini marinate for at least an hour (overnight is even better), and then serve it as a side dish or Neapolitan-style, on toast topped with mozzarella or ricotta.