You stand there at the nursery, looking at those tiny plants - thinking - let's get 3 or 4 types of zucchini - how much will they produce anyway? - Well - once in full production you need to be quite inventive or have a large recipe collection - because these plants will produce an abundance of veggies for you to pick more or less every day.
This year we settled for 3 types, the classical dark one, Il Fiorentino - pale green with sweet dense meat and then a yellow type for a bit of colour.
One way to get ahead in the zucchini game is to pick them while they are small - which is generally the rule - the smaller the better. We normally pick them, when they are about 10-15 cm, so you get a zucchine with firm, dense and sweet meat. This size makes them ideal raw in salads, so pick them small or ask your store to order small zucchini. Here are 2 very simple summer salads to get you started.
Take your small zucchini and slice them really thin lengthwise with a vegetable peeler or on a mandolin. Place them in iced water for a few minutes to crisp them up. The drain and dry on a kitchen towel. Add to a large bowl together with shaved parmesan, lots of mint and lemon zest. Dress with your best olive oil and season with black pepper, sea salt and lemon juice.
Serve right away - so the zucchini stays crisp.
So for the salad. Again slice the zucchini lengthwise on the mandolin or with the peeler. Crisp up in iced water and drain thoroughly.
Add to a bowl together with thinly sliced green apples, chopped parsley and thinly sliced fresh red chili. Dress with olive oil and season with black pepper, sea salt and lemon juice.
This is summer cooking - BUON APPETITO