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Mozza’s Oregano Salad Dressing

In our family we NEVER buy bottled dressing. We make a vinaigrette with the addition of a Dijon mustard or with ketchup and secret spices. I now dry about 40 cups of Greek Oregano each summer and this recipe is perfect as it uses a lot of the fragrant herb. I came across it in the Mozza Cookbook. I used more vinegar. Enough to cover and blend with the oregano and 2 1/2 TBS. was not enough. Yum.

Oregano vinaigrette
2 1⁄2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons dried oregano
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, plus more to taste
2 garlic cloves, 1 smashed and 1 grated or minced
1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
1 1⁄2 cups extra-virgin olive oil

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“Can’t Get Away From Zucchini”

A new country western song is now rolling in my head: “I can’t get away from my zucchini.”
My postings seem to be so filled with zucchini recipes, but luckily they are all great and in many you don’t even know that you are eating zucchini. This recipe, while so simple, is totally perfect and beautiful.

Budín de elote (Corn pudding with Zucchini)

Servings: 8 to 10

Ingredients:

3 cups fresh corn kernels (3 to 4 ears)

1 1/2 cups zucchini cut into 1/4-inch dice (3 to 4 slender zucchini)

1/3 cup flour

3 eggs

3 egg yolks

3 cups heavy cream

2 teaspoons kosher salt

Directions:

1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees with a rack positioned in the center. Butter a 9-inch casserole.

2. Place the corn and zucchini in a bowl and toss with the flour to evenly cover. Spread into the casserole.

3. Wipe the bowl clean and combine the eggs and yolks and whisk briefly. Add the cream and salt and whisk until fully incorporated. Pour over the vegetables.

4. Bake about 1 hour, until lightly browned on top; it should feel like a firm pillow. Allow to cool 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

Each of 10 servings: 342 calories; 6 grams protein; 15 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams fiber; 30 grams fat; 18 grams saturated fat; 223 mg. cholesterol; 283 mg. sodium.

It’s Zucchini Season Again

We grew our biggest Zucchini ever and it all happened while we were away on vacation this summer. I am always trying to find new ways to use the “big fruit” in some way. Here are 2 great ones. I have made various Zucchini bread recipes over the years and this one is no fail and produces a very moist cake. If the zucchini is large, slice open and de-seed before proceeding with the recipe. In fact, I just made a double recipe and mailed two loaves to the sons!

Paula Deen’s Zucchini Bread (I must give the Food network credit)
Ingredients

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3 cups sugar

1 cup vegetable oil

4 eggs, beaten

1/3 cup water

2 cups grated zucchini

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, nutmeg, baking soda, cinnamon and sugar. In a separate bowl, combine oil, eggs, water, zucchini and lemon juice. Mix wet ingredients into dry, add nuts and fold in. Bake in 2 standard loaf pans, sprayed with nonstick spray, for 1 hour, or until a tester comes out clean. Alternately, bake in 5 mini loaf pans for about 45 minutes.

I leave out the nuts and usually add an extra cup of zucchini.

 

Budin de elote (or Corn Pudding with Zucchini) from the Los Angeles Times.

This recipe is super easy and tastes great. WOWzer!

3 cups fresh corn kernels (3 to 4 ears)

1 1/2 cups zucchini cut into 1/4-inch dice (3 to 4 slender zucchini)

1/3 cup flour

3 eggs

3 egg yolks

3 cups heavy cream

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees with a rack positioned in the center. Butter a 9-inch casserole.

2. Place the corn and zucchini in a bowl and toss with the flour to evenly cover. Spread into a souffle or casserole dish.

3. Wipe the bowl clean and combine the eggs and yolks and whisk briefly. Add the cream and salt and whisk until fully incorporated. Pour over the vegetables.

4. Bake about 1 hour, until lightly browned on top; it should feel like a firm pillow. Allow to cool 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

The DR. is IN

Taking basic foods and “doctoring” them for more taste and flavor is a favorite activity of mine. For example, buy the artichoke and jalapeno dip at Costco. Place half of the container in a mixing bowl. Saute 1 large, thinly sliced sweet onion in olive oil. Add to the dip, along with 1 cup mayo (light is fine) and 1 cup grated Parmesan. Mix well. Spread on sliced french bread. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes and then broil to finish until golden. YUM!

More Zucchini

More Zucchini in the summer garden
After I gifted my friend Lorita with an extra large Zucchini from the bounty of our summer garden,  she shared this recipe with me after I tasted her delicious solution for the oversize monster of a vegetable.

Lorita’s Zucchini Soup

1 large can or box of chicken broth, Add 2 cups of water
4 medium zucchini or 1 very large (if large, de-seed), cut into chunks30 oz. chicken broth
1 bunch green onion, chopped
1 tsp fresh dill weed leaves (or more if you like dill)
Salt and Pepper

Combine above, bring to boil and then simmer for 30 minutes.
Add: 8oz cream cheese and 8oz. sour cream to above (OK to use light versions)

Puree all and serve warm with salt and pepper adjusted for taste. (Can easily double. This serves 6).

 

Chocolate Mousse Pie

For years this was my go to special evening dessert. It is easy to make, but delicious and rich to taste. You need a number of bowls, an electric mixer, and the presentation is prettier if you have a spring form pan. You can also make ahead and freeze it – thaw before serving.

Chocolate Mousse Pie

Crust:

3 cups chocolate wafer cookies, process to crumbs (or place in plastic bag and crush with rolling pin until fine)
1/2 cup melted unsalted butter

Combine cookie crumbs and melted butter in bowl and press onto bottom of 10 inch spring form pan. Refrigerate for 30 minutes while you make the rest of the pie.

Filling:

16 oz. good quality semi-sweet chocolate
2 eggs
4 egg yolks4 egg whites
2 cups whipping cream
6 Tbl. powdered sugar

Melt chocolate in top of double boiler. Let cool to lukewarm. Add whole eggs and mix well. Add yolk and mix well again. Transfer to a large bowl.
Whip cream with powdered sugar.
Beat egg whites until stiff.

Gently fold the cream and egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Start with a 1/4 of each. When all is mixed pour on top of the cookie crust. Chill for at least 6 hours or overnight.

To serve. Make more whip cream (1 cup with 2 tbl. sugar is good)  and place a slice of the mousse pie on a plate (use a sharp knife) add a dollop of cream.

 

 

Tomato/To-mato

The tomatoes are literally bursting at the seams this week with the minor heat wave. We over planted and have 500 on the vine now in early October. I love my Cuisinart food processor – now 30 years old, yet still chopping away and what better time to use it but during tomato season for some gazpacho.

Gazpacho

Gazpacho is one of those dishes that requires innovation. I am using much of what remains in our fall garden. Tomatoes (San Marzano, Beef Steak, Cherokee Purple, Sweet 100’s), Lemon Cucumbers, Green and Red peppers, Walla Walla Onions (or red onion), Basil, Parsley, Hot peppers, Garlic.

Chop the above into small chunks, but do not overdo it, using the Cusinart, try to have about 1 cup chopped of the tomatoes, cucumbers (remove seeds), peppers, and onions. Add about 1 chopped tablespoon each of the Basil, Parsley, Hot pepper, and garlic. Add about 2+ cups of tomato sauce (pre-made from your tomato overload) and 1/4cup each of olive oil and red wine vinegar. At the end add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and generously add salt, and pepper to taste. Let your mind soar with other additions (chopped radish, green onion, chopped and pre-cooked zucchini, chives, celery, hot sauce, red pepper flakes… ) You can also roast the peppers, onions, and tomatoes before chopping for a smokey flavor. AND if you do not like chunky, you can puree the entirety.

Mix well and let chill overnight or for at least an hour. Serve cold.