|Horse trough raised garden|
I’m originally from a small town located in a wide valley between mountain ridges in Southwest Virginia. Many people there agree with Loretta Lynn and still plant a garden, and harvest time inevitably brings forth an abundance of squash. You would be hard pressed to enter a home that didn’t have at least one loaf of zucchini bread in the freezer, waiting for a new neighbor to move in, a friend to fall ill, the birth of a baby, or a bereavement. Zucchini bread covers it all.
When I had an overabundance of zucchini in grad school, thanks to the largesse of a friend (as it was before I moved into the big garden house), I co-hosted a party that was billed as “Tribute to the Zucchini.” I made zucchini Provençal, stuffed zucchini, zucchini dipped in a beer batter and fried, and zucchini bread, to name a few of the dishes.
A few years ago, I spearheaded the planting of a small garden at the Early Head Start Center I supervised. Our successful crops were cherry tomatoes, okra, cucumbers—and zucchini. When I bought the plants I didn’t realize that most of my staff only ate yellow squash and had never even seen a zucchini. That meant that I had all the zucchini for myself! I made a stacked squash casserole; zucchini corn bread, zucchini chocolate chip cookies, oven “fried” zucchini and, of course, loaves of zucchini bread.