Wednesday, August 18, 2010

And Finally Zucchini...

I hated zucchini; not much flavor raw and slimy cooked - yuck. In fact, even with my first child I didn't cook it much at all. But then I was given some summer squash grown in a friend's garden and we grilled it with just olive oil, salt and pepper. What a difference! It actually can be quite tasty. And it is a perfect first food for babies - mild in flavor, full of good green vitamins, and easy to prepare. Now is the time to stock up as they are in season. To preserve, just shred and freeze in plastics bags.

To puree, wash and slice off the ends. Next slice the squash into 1/4-inch rounds. Fill a large pot with an inch of water and place a steamer basket inside. Put in the zucchini rounds, cover and turn on high. Once you hear the water boiling, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, checking after 10 minutes. The squash is cooked when easily pierced with a fork and looks translucent in the middle - see photo below.

Reserve cooking liquid and puree the squash, adding cooking water if needed to get yogurt-like consistency as seen in photo below.

Fill ice cube trays and cool in fridge. Once cool, place in freezer overnight; once frozen store in sealed plastic bags in freezer until needed. To serve, reheat as many cubes as needed in microwave until room temperature. Stir and feed baby who will love the green color and flavor. Pureed zucchini is also delicious with apple or pear sauce. I bought 2.53 pounds of zucchini which yielded 50 ounces of puree for a cost of $0.10 per ounce.

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