July Veg of the Month: The Courgette

It comes as no surprise that this month’s Chez Foti ‘Veg of the Month’ is the far from humble Courgette. Since my first picking of one on the 21st of June we’ve chomped our way through a considerable number (I’d love to know how many) and in quite an array of meals…and cakes! Barely a meal’s gone by without some sort of courgettie addition or side. It’s a good job I love them so much, which is more than can be said for my husband (his loving or rather non-loving of courgettes I meant). Though I should point out that considering he isn’t exactly their number one fan he’s been exceptionally tolerant of the whole Courgette Situation.

As I said in earlier blogs I didn’t intend to have NINE plants, I was aiming at four, but there was some sort of mix up in the seed planting. Luckily we’ve had people staying most of the last month who’ve helped in the Courgette Cause and I’ve also managed to palm quite a few off on any unsuspecting dropper-byers. So we’re almost on top of the situation, at least for now.

Courgettes are a virgin veggie growers dream. Easy to germinate,  quick-growing (though maybe not this year in the waterlogged UK), free from most diseases and pests and extremely fruitful. Give them a go, you won’t be disappointed.

Courgettes are so incredibly versatile in the kitchen and a wonder veg to cook with. And this last month I’ve certainly challenged their versatility to the max in the Chez Foti kitchen. They’ve been liberally adding to many a gorgeously fragrant Thai Green Curry (they really do work amazingly well in all curries), Ratatouile (recipe soon!), Risottos, Paella, various Omelettes and Tortillas, each and every Stir Fry I’ve made, an assortment of pasta dishes including Courgette & Sausage Carbonara (and also with bacon), my Garden Pasta (recipe coming shortly) and Courgette & Pesto Pasta.

Spinach, Courgette & Pesto Risotto

The 3 Cs, Chicken, Courgette & Chard Thai Green Curry

Courgettes have also featured in all our Barbecues (and we’ve been having quite a few this month), they’ve been dipped in lemon, olive oil, sea salt & pepper and barbecued (or on the stove in a griddle pan) in strips as a veggie side or served like this on Bruschetta with Feta & Basil. They’ve been kebabed with other veggies marinated in olive oil and thyme, lemon thyme, oregano or rosemary and made into Veggie Kebabs or Greek Stylie Pork Kebabs.

Veggie Kebabs, marinaded in olive oil, a little lemon & Lemon Thyme

Courgette, Feta & Basil Bruschetta

The neglected ones have been successfully utilised in my 70s Throwback Stuffed Marrow and when we got really bored of eating them they were amazing in Nigella’s Courgette Cake with Homemade Lemon Curd and Lemon Frosting. The kids have loved them in Mamacook’s Courgette & Feta Bites (actually so’ve we, three batches made so far!) which are great for lunches, picnics or afternoon snacks. They’ve even been enjoyed raw in Bangers & Mash Chat’s Courgette & Oregano Flower Salad (quite the prettiest salad I’ve ever eaten) and in HFW’s Curried Courgette Salad (actually I ate this at a friend’s house and I must get the exact recipe).

Mamacook’s Courgette & Feta Bites

Bangers & Mash Chat’s Courgette & Oregano Flower Salad, though hers was considerably prettier than mine!

With so many guests staying this month I actually haven’t got around to trying half as many recipes that I wanted to so here’s a few more ideas that I’m hoping to make before the courgette season’s out. Firstly there’s It’s Well Seasoned’s Lemon Courgette & Minted Feta Salad which I’ve been meaning to make for weeks, Kitchen Ninja’s Courgette Bread (actually Zucchini Bread, it’s American) that sounds divine, Riverford’s Chocolate Courgette Cake (from my Riverford Farm Cookbook), a Feta & Courgette Filo Pie that my mum’s been making for years from Bill Sewell’s From the Place Below book, Fried Courgette Flowers (in the two years since taking up gardening people have ALL asked me if I’ve tried making them, I MUST MUST do it!). Last but most certainly not least I’m seriously considering making Marrow Rum, though as it takes a year in the making could be a serious test of my normally-lacking patience!

So that’s it for this month’s round up, but I’d love to hear your favourite courgette recipes, ideas and uses. I’m certain we’ll be having plenty more courgettes yet this summer and I’m always game to find new and exciting ways of using them!. Whether I’ll still be married by the end of the summer is however not so certain 😉

My August Veg of the Month is to be the Tomato. With 58 plants (cherries, beef and plums) all fruiting I’ll be needing your help in Project Tomato!. Please share with me your recipes and I’ll gladly try to make them over the course of the month.

Thanking you kindly for all the courgettie inspiration!

Louisa

June Veg of the Month: Swiss Chard

I thought I’d end on a sweet note with this extroadinarily moist Courgette Cake

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10 responses to “July Veg of the Month: The Courgette

  • Sazza

    Quel surprise! With your bumper crop 🙂
    I’ll be sure to make a few of these beauties!

  • shacklefordlb

    I have just been given a GIANT marrow, so now browsing your recipe suggestions with interest. Mr B just raised his eyebrows 🙂

  • Vanesther

    What an amazing crop of courgette recipes! And I’m so chuffed you’ve included my courgette salad with oregano flowers. It’s always lovely when people tell you they’ve tried your recipes, but seeing photographs too is very special!

    • Chez Foti

      Thank you Vanesther! It was a lovely salad, sure to made again whilst we still have oregano flowers. I really need to invest in a mandolin though as it was a tad tricky cutting courgettes slithers with an ordinary knife. Mandolins have always scared me though, can’t watch them on Masterchef!

  • Nikki - A Mother in France

    Thank you so much for some great courgette recipe’s – can’t wait to try some and I’m sure my family will be pleased to have a change from courgette soup and gratin. We love courgette gratin, and it’s a great way to use up those monsters that get missed, but it does get a bit tideous after a few weeks! I chop up a monster courgette (the bigger the better for my lot), put in a pan with a little water to stop it burning. Let it simmer until soft, drain and pour into a large ovenproof dish, sprinkle with salt, pepper and nutmeg then cover with a cheese sauce made with lardons. Sprinkle with a little cayenne pepper then put under the grill to burn. Makes a great lunch or veg accompanyment.

    • Chez Foti

      Thanks so much for the Courgette Gratin recipe! I’d never even thought of it, what a great idea and sure to go down well with the kids too. I’d also forgotten about courgette soup, my mum makes a lovely one and I really must get her recipe! Louisa

  • Kitchen Ninja

    Thanks for sharing my zucchini bread post — although I think “courgette” is much classier!!

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