Monday, August 11, 2008

Zucchini Fraud

And I think you would agree.

You know all those darling little volunteer squash plants in my garden? We're getting to the point where we can tell what they are. "By their fruits ye shall know them," you know.

And so it was with great delight that I discovered that one of the plants, right in the midst of the black beans, was a zucchini! I didn't plant any of that this year, as everyone ends up paying people to take the stuff, and I knew I'd be able to find some if I wanted. I was very excited, though, to see these coming available so conveniently.

Today I picked the first, and decided to try some delicious-looking zucchini cakes I found a recipe for somewhere online. I grated the thing (tossed out the somewhat-large seeds, though), salted it, squeezed the moisture out through a towel, mixed it with some breadcrumbs oatmeal, parmesan cheddar cheese, salt, pepper, garlic, an egg. It was looking so tasty. I heated up some coconut oil in a pan, and carefully pattied my mix into an appropriate arrangement, and waited. I flipped them over when they were nicely brown, and took a taste as the edges cooled.

...Hm. Yuck. Ew. That's terrible. Did I only get a piece of garlic? Did I burn the garlic? Oh, that's nasty. And it just lingers. Ick.

So I got another piece, a more substantial, less crispy-edged one, and I smelled it. Not too garlicky. This would be better.

Oh ick yuck blech ew pfffttt thhppppfff cough gag spit.

It was most definitely not better. Worse, if that's possible.

What in tarnation?

There was a remaining crumb in my mouth, and I inspected it first by taste, and began to believe it was certainly garlic. Bitter, rancid maybe, though not spicy. I removed the tidbit and was surprised to see an edge of green skin that convinced me the nastiness was the zucchini itself. And it was the kind of nastiness that pinched your cheeks inward for the next 30 minutes at least.

After jump-starting some brain cells, I began to think this through. The plant is a volunteer... It's parentage is unknown... Those larger-than-usual seeds... It's slower growth rate (for a zucchini)... It's not a zucchini! It must be an evil, masquerading zucchini-gourd!


So much for the manna-from-heaven aspect of these (somewhat) labor-free produce producers.

And I'm not wasting any more diatomaceous earth on saving it from the squash bugs. As a matter of fact, I probably won't be letting it shade my black beans, either.

Your days of defrauding this gardener (and eater) are over, Evil Masquerading Zucchini Gourd.

1 comment:

Sariah said...

How is your feud with the evil zucchini gourd coming along? I can relate! I let quite a few squash/pumpkin type volunteers stay this spring hoping that they would be pumpkins or something vaguely useful. Well, come to find out after they took over the gooseberry bush, beets and part of the purple bean patch- they are just weirdo mutant hybrids! I KNEW better but in the spring you are so optimistic. :-) I am going to try your recipe because it sounds like it has the potential to be delicious. I grew 4 types of summer squash this year by the way (what was I thinking??) I will pay you to take some. ;-)