Friday, 26 June 2009

Courgettes R Us

Last year, you may remember, it was plums. This year it's courgettes. For heaven's sake, it's still only June and we're drowning in the things: I must have picked at least 12 kilos just in the last 10 days, all from six plants. Actually I blame Benjamin, our neighbours' donkey. Or at least his fumier. But what on earth is the matter with courgette plants? Why can't they be - well, a bit more restrained? Then we'd all like them better, and friends wouldn't hide behind the sofa when they see you coming with the tell-tale basket.

Having said all that, I do love home grown courgettes. They bear about as much resemblance to the floppy woolly things you find in supermarkets as a fresh crab does to a crabstick. In fact you could be forgiven for believing that they're actually different vegetables (are you reading this, you potager-less friends? You see, you can come out now ...). And of course you get the flowers to stuff as well, as if you didn't have enough to do being creative with the courgettes themselves.

It's not an uncommon problem - people have even written books about it - and there's certainly no shortage of Interesting Things to Do with courgettes: we've already had pasta sauces and grilled courgettes and stuffed courgettes and baked courgettes and risottos and muffins and briam and ragu and ciambotta and fritters and flowers stuffed with brousse, and I can feel the first courgette cake of the season coming on any minute now. And then there's always soup, and chutney, and jam, when things get desperate. It's just that - are you listening to this, you plants? - there are only two of us, and just occasionally - once a week would do, honest - it would be quite nice to eat something else ...

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