For the Week of August 27, 2007

Zucchini! At least I’m pretty sure these are zucchini. It said so on the tag at the State Fair, though I don’t recall seeing zucchini with such pronounced stripes before. Maybe someone out there can enlighten me.

As you’ve probably guessed, this week will be a continuation of the when-life- gives-you-lemons baking and pastry strategy I instituted last week, when I laid out a set of recipes that used tomatoes in a sweet context. I see no reason not to continue it, for as I said the deep freeze we had this past spring all but wiped out the fruit crops in the lower Midwest. And heck I gotta make my winter jam out of SOMETHING!!

Zucchini are as good a bet as anything, since they’re even more flexible flavor-wise than tomatoes (which now that I think about it really aren’t all that flexible). They are certainly more abundant. The standing joke around my neighborhood — which is packed with backyard gardeners — is that come late summer we have to keep our cars locked at night to keep people from sneaking zucchini into them. It’s practically true.

Also, the good news is that it’s also a little bit cooler around here (OK, a very little bit), which makes it easier for me to rationalize turning the oven on.

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