Friday, 31 July 2009

Lumen accipe et imperti (Λάβετε φως και μοιράσετέ το)

Here's a very summery recipe to use up an over-productive zucchini crop. Zucchini pate is very simple to make and can be used in a variety of ways, as Ruth Pretty notes, whose recipe Michelle led me to.

zucchini paste zucchini paste
Although I enjoyed the zucchini pasta, I loved this pate spread on bread. I could survive on this throughout the summer.
zucchini paste

Lumen accipe et imperti ("receive the light and pass it on") was the school motto for WGC. Ruth, Michelle and I are all "old girls" of this state school in Wellington. All the schools in Wellington had nicknames, used mainly by pupils of other schools. Ours was "Wellington Grills". Most immigrant Greeks sent their children to state schools, but that's not where their grandchildren are being educated nowadays, a sign of upward mobility in the next generation of Wellington Greeks. Most are now attending private schools that their parents probably made fun of when they were young, places like St Farts and Snots Porridge. They have clearly moved up the ladder in Kiwi society, forming the middle classes of Kiwiland. This is not surprising; Greeks are a remarkably progressive race when they get out of their own country, taking up any opportunities given to them to make good, and instilling similar expectations in their children.

An old girl posing with her parents on Prizegiving Day before the end of the school year, November 1981.

Rachel also recommended the same pate recipe to me, spicing it up with onion and garlic, which is how I made it for a bit of added flavour.

You need:
a quantity of grated zucchini to suit your needs (courgettes and marrow may both be used)
a few tablespoons of olive oil (I used more than a few; zucchini absorbs oil very quickly)
a coarsely chopped onion
1-2 finely chopped cloves of garlic
salt and pepper

Heat the oil in a saucepan and add the onion and garlic. Cook till the onion has softened. Add the grated zucchini (if the zucchini came with the flower still attached to it, you can also add that chopped in thin strips) and let it stew away until most of the water has evaporated and the mixture looks like a thick paste. Season with salt and pepper, and serve on grilled bruschetta, toast, hot pasta, or even as a dip (alongside tzatziki) with crunchy vegetables.

Michelle tells me that this paste freezes well. All I can say is I'll be glad when I see the end of this year's zucchini crop...

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