Zucchini Slice

That time of year thou mayst here espy
When apple cucumber and courgettes pile high,
And chillies in excess of common sense
Cluster below the beans along the fence.

This is one I grabbed off the internet in a hurry one day and adapted as I went along. At the time I was on a minor healthy food kick - nothing too serious - and this one stood out for it's lack of sour cream, a change from my usual Quiche Daveed style. Mind you it has got a half cup of oil in it, so maybe only marginally healthier. The recipe made enough for dinner for the two of us and some cold for lunch the next day, and was delicious both hot and cold. It's principal claim to consideration, however, is that it uses about 2-3 courgettes from the huge and growing bowlful on the sideboard.

You will need:

2-3 courgettes depending on size (I have also used pumpkin or a pumpkin kumara combo here for an entirely different taste. You could also incorporate a choko, etc etc. All cucurbits. (I'd be cautious about watermelon though...))

1 decent size onion, chopped finely

1 stick celery finely chopped (or 2-3 sticks cutting celery - less bulky and more concentrated in flavour (optional)

3/4 teaspoon chopped or grated garlic

1 rashers bacon, coarsely chopped and dry-fried to semi- crisp

100g chopped pork or chicken or sausage - venison is good - dry fried beforehand with the bacon until cooked through

1/2 cup grated cheese

1/2 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 cup olive oil, (or grapeseed, or ricebran, or peanut)

Salt and Pepper to taste;

Green chilli to taste (or a touch of cayenne. be careful.)

3 eggs, lightly beaten

1/2 handful grated parmesan

1 square of pastry appr 250mm sq


In a LARGE bowl, place the grated courgettes and chopped onion. Add the remaining ingredients, except the parmesan, and stir just enough to combine.

I use a baking dish about 200mm square, and even though this recipe was originally billed as "self-crusting" I found this was not always the case, so I grease and flour the dish, then line it with short savoury pastry.

Pour the combined ingredients into the pastry dish, sprinkle the parmesan over itand bake at 180C for approximately 40 - 45 minutes until firm, and golden brown on top. Cut into pieces and remove carefully from the dish with a fish slice. Or leave until cold and serve as a lunch dish or for dinner on a hot day.


Cutting Celery


This herb could be mistaken for flat-leafed parsley--the two are related and part of the carrot family (Apiaceae). The flavor gives itself away. Cutting celery has a more pungent flavor than grocery-store celery, and can be substituted for regular celery in most recipes. A few sprigs can replace one large celery stalk. But honestly, eating celery from the grocery store is like eating crunchy, stringy water.

Growing your own pot of cutting celery is less wasteful than buying an entire bunch of grocery-store celery (and your fridge will now be free of rotten celery). I never fertilize mine. I grow them in potting soil and are watered only when they need it. Usually they are wilting a bit before I get to them, but they spring right back. My garden bakes in the sun, so I keep this pot in the shade to prevent my celery from bolting.

You can use the entire sprig, or use the stalk and leaves seperately. The stalks are more concentrated with flavor.






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