Yes, we have no zucchini

Thursday, August 21, 2008

As you may recall, Mr. Jelly Belly hates to eat vegetables. However, he does love to grow things. So last summer he decided to try his hand at planting a vegetable garden. He claims he did it for me, which is probably at least partially true, but I think it was mostly done to give him another reason to spend countless happy hours toiling in the backyard.

He planted some broccoli and cauliflower and a few peppers which didn’t really fare so well, but good LORD, we were overtaken with an abundance of tomatoes and yellow squash - and especially zucchini. And they weren’t the puny little vegetables you find in the produce section of Kroger, either. These were monster zucchini, each one easily large enough to feed a family of four two meals per day.

When the first ones came in, we ooohed and ahhhed and were so excited by our bounty. I scoured the internet for recipes and found tasty ways to fry it, bake it, broil it, steam it, sauté it and bury it in casseroles. I made zucchini bread, zucchini pie and zucchini muffins. And I was the only one eating it. The zucchini began to take on a life of its own and my kitchen counters were covered with piles of the stuff. We gave them to co-workers. We gave them to friends. We gave them to relatives. We gave them to friends OF relatives. We snuck out in the middle of the night and left small piles on the neighbors’ porches. But, still, they kept on comin’.

Finally the summer drew to a close and our zucchini nightmare came to an end. We swore we would never plant zucchini again.

This year we have a variety of vegetables in the garden, including green beans and tomatoes and peppers and onions – but we don’t have any zucchini. And now, of course, I NEED it.

A co-worker unloaded one of his zucchini on us a few weeks ago and I made some zucchini pancakes (think “potato pancake” only with zucchini instead of potato) and they were delicious. And now that I have found interesting recipes for zucchini Doritos and a taco pizza on a zucchini crust, there is nary a zucchini to be found. And not one neighbor has left any on our doorstep.

Since I don't really feel like scrounging through the neighborhood on the sly, looking for zucchini in non-secured gardens, I am going to be forced to go out and actually buy the stuff. I cannot believe it. I could just cry.

Next year there will be zucchini in our garden. And I’m sure I will live to regret it.