vegetable: summer squash~ garden to table

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SUMMER SQUASH

HARVEST, STORE, SERVING

WHEN AND HOW TO HARVEST Time from planting to harvest depends on the variety, as does the yield you can expect. Harvest summer squashes when they're young--they taste delicious when they're small, and if you leave them on the plant too long they will suppress flowering and reduce your crop. Harvest summer squashes like the zucchini and crookneck varieties when they're six to eight inches long; harvest the round types when they're four to eight inches in diameter. Break the squashes from the plant, or use a knife that you clean after cutting each one; if the knife is not perfectly clean, it can spread disease to other plants.

STORING AND PRESERVING Summer squashes can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week; don't wash them until you're ready to use them. They can also be frozen, canned, pickled, or dried.

SERVINGS SUGGESTIONS Summer squashes lend themselves to a good variety of culinary treatments. Saute slices of summer squash with onions and tomatoes for a robust but delicately flavored side dish.

Add sliced zucchini and mushrooms to a thick tomato sauce for spaghetti. Halve summer squashes and stuff with a meat or rice mixture, or bake them with butter and parmesan cheese. Pan-fry slices of summer squash, or simmer them with fruit juice for a new flavor.

Use the popular zucchini raw on a relish tray and among vegetables for a tempura, or slice it thinly in salads. Use the larger fruit for making zucchini bread.

Source: Vegetable Gardening Encyclopeida by Galahad Books, NYC, NY 1982 Typos by Dorothy Flatman, 1995 Posted by Michael Prothro KOOK-NET :þ Mike's Resort BBS, Fayetteville,AR,(501)521-8920þ

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