What to do with extra homegrown zucchini

It is said that two zucchini plants produce enough zucchinis for a family of four to eat as much as they can for the entire summer. This year I grew three zucchini plants for the two of us, which meant way too much of it if we were to stick only to our traditional Persian style zucchini stew.

Almost every single morning I checked on my vegetable garden I found a new baby zucchini turned into a huge heavy one almost before my eyes. So, even with all I gave away to family and friends I still had to come up with new creative ways to consume this delicious vegetable.

Below is some of the stuff I tried and was quite happy with the result.

Grilled Zucchini I washed and cut unpeeled zucchini into fairly large pieces, sprinkled salt and barbequed them on both sides.

The barbecued zucchini is an excellent addition to any summer main meal be it barbecued chicken or meat kabab or juts other vegetables.

The barbecued zucchini is also very tasty when served with yogurt and herbs along with bread as a Persian side dish.

Finally, grilled zucchini can be cut into small pieces to go in any type of salad.

Blended zucchini: Put small pieces of washed zucchini in blender and mix it with tahini, cooked beans, olive oil, lemon juice, turmeric, salt and pepper – here is the detailed recipe.

Zucchini dip is tasty and refreshing with raw vegetables or chips.

It can also be used as spread to make sandwiches.

Zucchini blooms: Zucchini blooms taste very good and look amazing in your salad. We just need to be careful not to pick the ones that produce zucchini though.

As you might know, a zucchini plant produces both male and female blossoms. Male blossoms appear at the end of slender stems, like shown in the picture, and do not set fruit. Their job is to provide the pollen for bees to carry to the female blooms. This is how female blooms swell and produce fruits. The number of male blooms you get throughout the summer is usually more than what you need to have your female ones pollinated. For this reason we need to make sure  to pick male blooms for our salad – the ones at the end of long slender stems. Do not start picking these flowers early in the season though, or you won’t get any fruit at all.

Thoroughly wash the flowers. Cut them in half and use in salad raw just like that. Frying them will diminish the color and taste.

Grated zucchini: Finally you could grate raw zucchini to make zucchini frittata.

There are many recipes on the internet for this. I will share mine with you soon in a separate blog entry.

All I can tell you is that it is very fast and easy and it turns hard on the outside and tender in the inside. So stay tuned!

Share with us what YOU make with green/yellow zucchini.


Summer Dip with Zucchini, white beans and tahini

I found the recipe for this delicious and easy dip in PRAVA organic site and modified it slightly to my taste. You could do the same I am sure as long as you keep the main ingredients in: It is a vegetarian recipe and completely gluten and dairy free.

Ingredients Read the rest of this entry »


Curry Vegetables Stew

This is a modified version of an eggplants curry which I once tried in an Indian restaurant and absolutely loved. It is made of my favorite vegetables eggplants, portabella mushrooms, red potatoes and tomatoes; it is also aromatic and absolutely gorgeous looking. So, give it a try if you are in for fried garlic, turmeric, black pepper and curry. As a stew, it is best served with white rice.

Ingredients: Read the rest of this entry »


Moving  back to the old house

My dear friends, between today and April 20th, I will be moving my English and Persian blogs back to the wordpress.  My current host is Hostgator, which I am not finding very useful given the limited amount of activity I am engaged in.

So, fingers crossed, the transition should be smooth and my readers will be automatically redirected to the new site, which is different in appearance but identical in content. I will try to replace and fix missing contents and categories, should it be necessary.

PS I found in my ebook files, this drawing by my good and talented friend Vahid Dastpak. And figured it somehow reflects my decision to go back to the good old wordpress.com !!

See you soon!


Rose Tea for this Norooz

Spring and the Persian new year is just a few days away; that, plus the company of good friends at Persian Food Bloggers ( #Persianfoodbloggers #PFBNowruz) give sufficient motivation to post again! Consider my reflection on Rose gardens and rose tea, a trip on memory line rather than a tea recipe, as I am sure everyone knows how to make tea 🙂

rosetea_M

Meymand is a village close to my old hometown Shiraz in Iran’s southern province of Fars; it is well-known for its rose gardens and rose-water produce.  The roses blossom around April when Rose Festival is held.  This is also the time when the main bulk of rose flowers are picked and prepared either for distillation or to be dried for culinary and medicinal purposes.  The rose gardens remain well and yielding till the end of the summer,  providing an ongoing source of rose flower extract , called golaab in Persian. Read the rest of this entry »


A Food Trip in Iran

That time of the year again, around spring and Persian New year, Norooz –   the perfect time to find the motivation to write, to post, and to cherish and share the wonderful moments where people, plants and beautiful customs come to a renewed life one more time.  Below is a selection of pictures taken by my sister, in several Iranian cities, including Shiraz, Yazd, Booshehr, Dargahan and Tehran,  during the months of March to April 2016.

A Food Trip in Iran from Afsaneh Hojabri on Vimeo.


Fish Ghalyeh, (ghlayeh maahi) for Norooz

With the spring just three days away, here I am again celebrating the arrival of the much cherished Persian New year, Norooz, along with some 187 million other people in 15 countries across the globe, including a handful of my good talented Persian Food Bloggers – this time with a rather sophisticated Persian dish, a Southern Iran’s specialty called ghlayeh mahi, a spicy, thick fish stew.  #PersianFoodBloggers, #PFBNorooz

Norooz which marks the beginning of the official calendar year in Iran and Afghanistan coincides with the Vernal Equinox, as you might know –  this spring on Sun 21 March 2016 at 8:00 AM Iran time ( 12:30 AM Montreal time, where I live).  Norooz is also the most cherished tradition observed and honored by people of different ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds inside and outside Iran. If you are interested to get a bit more familiar with Norooz traditions from a personal point of view,  I urge you to visit my Norooz post from last year roundup, or watch a short colorful video clip from a few years back. Read the rest of this entry »