Wednesday, July 7, 2010

In the Kitchen: Oversized Garden Veggies

Have you "found" an oversized vegetable in your garden?  Maybe it was hiding under a leaf or maybe it just had a growth spurt overnight!  Anyways, it always happens to us.  Last week, when we picked vegetables at my Dad's garden, he had already picked these humongous squash and zucchini.  The zucchini is the length of my forearm and I wear a size 9-1/2 sneaker, just so you know it's a biggie!

Some people would just throw these out in the compost pile or feed to their farm animals, but I wanted to share with you a way to prepare them so you can feed your family.  Because these are so big, the seeds inside are even bigger.  In fact, you can save these seeds and plant them next year.  We did that last year with green beans.  

Since the seeds are big, the objective is to cut the sides of the zucchini away from the center core filled with seeds.  This leaves a "square" shaped core of seeds.  You can toss this in the compost or feed your farm animals.  

You will need to scoop out a little of the seeds leftover in the sides of the flesh.  I use the backside of a peeler, but you can use a spoon too.  

Now they're ready to be cut into a manageable sizes.  From here I sliced one side in half, then into sticks and finally I cubed them (since I was making our Summer Veggie Pasta Salad).  

For the oversized Summer squash, you'll need to peel and slice away the hard outside skin.  From there you would proceed with the previous steps outlined for the zucchini.

Next time you have an oversized veggie, don't just toss it, try to make it work.  This works for me.


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Turning the Clock Back said...

I wish I had veggies like that! I seem to have some mysterious issue that is making round cucumbers. It is just wrong but they still taste good!

April said...

What a great tip, no waste! I think we are a throw away society, and we need to start learning how to get the most out of everything, before we toss it. Thanks for the zucchini tip, I'll be sure to use it.

Its So Very Cheri said...

WOW--I always like to pick them before they get big just because they are more tender.


Susie said...


The Halbert Home said...

We turned our oversized zucchini into muffins! We grated it up and made dozens and dozens of muffins out of it.

Hannah said...

Great idea, thanks for sharing!

We put grated zucchini in the freezer, and there are lots of uses for it later!

Jenna @ Newlyweds said...

I do the same exact thing, we had quite a few biggies this year, I shredded and froze most of them.

catberner said...

Great idea! The zucchini in my garden are still just babies, but I plan on making use of all of them, even if some do try to hide on me and grow to mammoth proportions. Waste not want not :)

Jami said...

Great TGP post, Candi! I do this, too, with big ones and also grate them. My daughter wants me to let them all get this big 'cause she just wants the zucchini bread I make with the grated.:-)


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