Friday, July 27, 2007

Summer Cooking

Today I will spend my last 'free' morning from the kids shopping. Not the fun shopping either, the grocery, dollar, and Target type stuff... and a trip to the liquor store, so maybe a little fun.

This summer, I'm working on buying my produce from the farmers' market. So far, it's worked out pretty well. There's one downtown on Wednesday and another in the neighboring 'burb on Saturday, so I just try to buy what I need for the next few days.

Not That Martha's Zucchini Bread
3 cups flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 cup chopped nuts
4 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. salt
4 eggs
2/3 c. veg. oil
2 cups grated zucchini
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. grated lemon peel
Raisins ( optional )

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two loaf pans. In large bowl with fork, mix flour, sugar, nuts, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. In medium bowl with fork, beat eggs slightly; stir in oil, zucchini, and lemon peel. Combine liquid and flour mixtures, just until flour is moistened. Spread evenly into pans. Bake 1 hour. Cool in pans on rack 10 minutes, then remove from pans and serve warm or cold.

I omitted the nuts and the optional raisins. The kids loved it. Tuesday night, our backyard neighbors came for dinner. Both the Dad-types were out of town, so we pooled our resources for an easy cookout. Burgers, corn on the cob and watermelon. I made the zucchini bread. The kids (there were six total) went crazy over the bread. Crazy. I cooked it in a 9x13 pan (rather than two loaf pans - so the cooking time is decreased to 30 - 40 minutes or so) and the kids ate over half of the pan!

Five stars!

Chicken and Zucchini
2 chicken breasts - cubed
2 zucchini (smallish) - sliced
salt and pepper
Italian Seasoning
Pasta Sauce
Rice or noodles

Saute chicken breasts in a little olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste. Add a little (1/4 tsp or so) Italian seasoning. When the chicken is almost done (3-4 minutes) add the zucchini and cook a few minutes more. Add a little more (1/4 tsp) Italian seasoning. Cook maybe 5 or so minutes - until the zucchini starts to soften. Add the pasta sauce and heat through. Serve over noodles or rice.

I made this the other day around 4 pm and put it in the crockpot on low. The kids and I ate around 5:30, my husband around 8:30. It kept really well in the crockpot. We had it over rice. It was a nice change of pace from the summer grilling.

Corn on the grill.
Corn on the cob
Garlic powder
Aluminum foil - heavy duty works best.

Husk corn and remove silk. Place corn on a piece of foil with a small pat of butter (about a teaspoon or so), salt ,and a little garlic powder. Seal up foil. Place over medium coals, turning every 5 minutes for a total of about 20 minutes.

I could eat this every day.


Joe said...

Let me know if the marinade works out for you, Gretchen.

Tanaya said...

It's zucchini season - I'm making chocolate zucchini cake tomorrow.

Heather said...

I've been hitting the farmer's markets as well--YUM! Will have to try making corn like that sounds great.

Check out the website for more zucchini recipes. (The book is great as well).

aimee / greeblemonkey said...

all look scrumptious!

Karen said...

Yum, yum, Slurp!

Heather said...

The corn was great like that--I even convinced the kids the brown was carmelized not burned and they LIKED it!