Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Zucchini Chronicles, Part 4: Hot Zucchini Nights With Zucchini Patties

The garden plot thickens. What's not to love about the deluge of summer squash overflowing from their beds. Technically a fruit, zucchini is served like a vegetable. The succulent babies need minimal cooking to enhance their taste. Understate: light steaming, little salt, little olive oil or butter, good to go.

There are days however, when those petite zucchinis elude the daily pickings. One morning you discover the one that got away. Innocence is lost. That cute tender baby morphed into an awkward adolescent. You get distracted. Other life matters vie for the top of the "to do" list. Somewhere in the back of your mind you suspect the zucchini situation may be getting out of hand. Next thing you know those juniors have burst into bulbous big boys in poor taste. Even your best neighbors smile blankly and with glazed looks just say no to your free zukes.
Is that a zucchini in your pocket
or are you just happy to see me?
Summer nights get steamy. You can't sleep, tossing and turning with visions of those giant stalks yearning for attention. No rest for the weary gardener or the lusty quick witted cook. Appetites are whetted, earthy smells arouse the erotic imagination, fingers long to stroke the firm fruits, sliding their length into open lips hungry for stimulation...
Oh my, even if size doesn't matter, releasing all those creative juices can ignite a smokin' fantasy.

Hold your horses! I meant a food fantasy, those love pats turned to patties. Zucchini Patties, a basic recipe coming from a day dream in the middle of the night. A zesty dish intended to heighten gastronomic pleasure with plenty of room for improvisation. Bites whose size you can play to your own satisfaction, smaller for nibbles, larger for entrees. Toss in the odd lots of veggies and proteins occupying the erogenous zones in your fridge. Spice it up with a few tablespoons of finely chopped jalapenos. Douse with chipotles or hot salsa and bring on the sizzle.

Zucchini Patties
Jewish friends call them zucchini latkes
Serves 6

3 cups grated zucchini (or other summer squash)
1 midsized onion, minced
1 Tablespoon butter
2 eggs
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Mix squash and onion in a medium bowl. In a smaller bowl, beat the eggs, add flour and butter. Combine with the squash. Heat oil in a medium skillet, spoon the mixture in heaping teaspoons or quarter cups.  Cook until golden and flip. Drain on paper towels. Salt and pepper when hot.

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