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Mon, Oct. 14

Vegetable recipes for summer's bounty

A visit to the Prescott Valley Community Garden at Lake Valley and Florentine (behind Albertsons) will make your mouth water for the taste of fresh garden vegetables. The garden this year has gone vertical, using the same perimeters but with a yield increase. It is bursting with squash, peas, beans, cucumbers, etc. You can also go online at pvcommunitygarden.com for a look and information. Here are some vegetable recipes. Thanks to all those who work in the garden and share food with others.

LEMON-STEAMED GREEN BEANS

2 pounds fresh green beans

2/3 cup water

1/2 tsp. salt

2 tbsp. olive oil

1 tbsp. finely grated lemon zest

Place green beans (cut in half or smaller) in large skillet. Mix water, salt and oil and pour over beans. Cover skillet and turn on high heat. When beans begin steaming and start to sizzle, time to cook about 5-7 minutes. Stir in zest and serve.

GREEN BEAN AND BELL PEPPER SALAD

1/3 cup red-wine vinegar

3 tbsp. olive oil

1 medium onion, halved and thinly sliced

Coarse grind salt and black pepper

2 pounds green beans, trimmed and halved crosswise

1 each red and yellow bell peppers (or 2 of same color) ribs and seeds removed, cut into wedges about 2 inches long and 1/2 inch wide.

In large bowl, whisk together vinegar and oil. Add onion. Toss to combine; season with spices and set aside. May make ahead and refrigerate this covered with plastic wrap, separately, combining with other ingredients just before serving.

In large pot of boiling water, cook green beans until tender-crisp only about 5-6 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water. Pat dry with paper towels.

To bowl with onion, add peppers and cooked green beans. Toss to combine, adding more salt and pepper if desired.

OVEN-FRIED SQUASH SPEARS

(Oven only on about

7 minutes - don't panic.) 4 servings

2 yellow summer squash or zucchini

Lemon juice or Italian salad dressing

3 tbsp. grated Parmesan, Romano or mixed Italian cheeses

3 tsp. Italian seasoned bread crumbs

Quarter, washed unpeeled squash lengthwise to make 8 spears. Leave whole, or cut in half if shorter desired. Moisten with lemon juice or salad dressing (your choice); roll spears in mixture of combined breadcrumbs and cheeses. Arrange in single layer, not touching, on shallow nonstick baking tray pre-sprayed with cooking spray. Bake, uncovered in preheated very hot (475) oven about 5-7 minutes.

SUMMER SQUASH

These grilled squash can be marinating after grilling while you grill meat (at least 30 minutes or up to one hour). It adds a lot of flavor. Use any summer squash of your choice.

2 medium each zucchini and yellow squash, halved lengthwise (or all 4 the same)

1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp. olive oil, divided

1/2 tsp. each salt and coarsely ground pepper, divided

2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

2 tsp. grated lemon rind

Pinch of red pepper flakes

2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh basil

Heat grill to high. Brush squash with 1 tbsp. oil and season with 1/4 tsp. each of the salt and pepper. Grill cut side down until light golden brown 3-4 minutes. Flip and grill just until thoroughly cooked, 4-5 minutes more. Remove and cut crosswise into 1/2 inch thick slices.

Whisk together remaining 1/4 cup oil, lemon juice, lemon rind, red pepper flakes and remaining salt and pepper in large bowl. Add squash and basil. Toss gently to coat. Cover and let sit at room temperature as suggested. Serves 4.

ZUCCHINI COOKIES

Makes 55 cookies. Will keep three days in airtight container.

1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup sugar

1 large egg, beaten lightly

1 cup grated zucchini

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp. each baking soda and cinnamon

1/2 tsp. ground cloves

1/2 tsp. salt

1 cup each raisins and chopped walnuts.

In large bowl with electric mixer cream together the butter and sugar until mixture is light and fluffy, beat in egg and stir in zucchini. Into a bowl, sift the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt. Stir flour mixture into butter mixture and then raisins and walnuts. Drop by rounded tsp.

2 inches apart onto baking sheet and bake cookies in batches in middle of preheated 375 oven for 10 minutes or until edges are golden and cookies are firm. Transfer with metal spatula to rack for cooling. NOTE: The recipe didn't specify whether or not to grease so I did a light spray and it worked perfectly. Sometimes that much fat is enough, but I didn't want to risk sticking (and waste any broken cookies).

Eat your veggies!

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