How to Enjoy the Delicious Versatility and Nourishment of Pennsylvania’s Bounty

July 13, 2018

No matter how you access local vegetables – farm stand, roadside stand, farmers market, or CSA –  there’s rarely a Pennsylvania growing season that passes without delivering an abundance of zucchini. Thankfully, zucchini is incredibly versatile. You can even eat it raw! This time of year, it’s often eaten right off the grill with just a pinch of salt and pepper. It doesn’t get any easier than that! However, when you’re ready to excite your palate and explore something new, you can count on paveggies.org’s recipes to guide you through that exploration. The recently redesigned website features recipes for almost every type of Pennsylvania vegetable you could imagine, and the latest zucchini recipes come complete with a video tutorial, too.

Zucchini Noodle dishes, like the one featured here (below), are a crowd favorite and come together in no time, but don’t write off the Zucchini Fritters and Chocolate Zucchini Muffins featured in the PA Veggies video as well. No matter which recipe, or recipes, you decide to follow, it all starts with finding the best local vegetables.

First, start at a local source. Local vegetables are not only more flavorful, they contain more nutrients than “cross country” vegetables, because there is less time between harvest and consumption. When it comes to zucchini, you should consider selecting those that are on the small side, as the flesh will be more tender and the vegetable will have more flavor. The best size for zucchini is about six to eight inches long and two inches or less in diameter. If the zucchini has a darker skin, then the nutrient content is richer. Some of the most sought after nutrients that zucchini contains include fiber, vitamin c, and potassium. They have a low calorie count, making them a perfect, healthy vegetable alternative for several carb-heavy dishes, like pasta. When you work in additional vegetables, like tomatoes, onion, or fennel, grown fresh by your local farmers, zucchini noodle dishes can really sing, and impress a crowd.

Since zucchini grows so abundantly during its season, farmers are often eager to sell it in bulk. When you’re buying bulk, it’s best to connect with your farmer directly. Chances are, you won’t just get the best product and piece of mind knowing where your food came from, you’re likely to get a better price, too. You can head to your local on-farm market, a roadside farm stand, or a farmers’ market and discuss details with the crew on-site. Consider calling ahead if you don’t want to chance the availability of your large order. Farmers will often take note of your request and include it in the next harvest when they can’t fulfill it that same day. Once you’ve obtained your desired amount and you’re ready to begin preparing, it’s easy as pie to make additional servings with each recipe from the PA Veggies’ video, and freeze leftovers for the future.

Zucchini Noodles

Change the way you think about pasta, and lower the carbohydrates count, with this delicious vegetable alternative!

What You’ll Need:

  • Vegetable spiralizer
  • 2 large zucchini, stems and bottoms removed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • Zest from 1/2 a lemon
  • 4 teaspoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon mint leaves, cut into thin strips (chiffonade)

How to Make:

  • Spiralize the zucchini into thin noodles.
  • Heat oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium heat.
  • Add garlic and lemon zest to the olive oil.
  • Sauté until fragrant, being careful not to brown the garlic.
  • Add the zucchini to the skillet and toss while heating.
  • Don’t overcook! Just heat the zucchini through.
  • Top with Parmesan and mint. Serve and enjoy!

Expert Tips:

  • Add chili flakes or sun-dried tomatoes.
  • Substitute spiralized carrots for half of the zucchini.
  • Garnish with bread crumbs and paprika.

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  • When corn is in season, we’ll do whatever we can to enjoy it in as many meals as possible, which is why we love this Crustless, Cheesy Corn Quiche Recipe. Enjoy more #paveggies ideas and #homegrownhappiness at paveggies.org. 
4 Ears of Corn – large, fresh, husked and cut off (or 3 c. frozen com, thawed)
1/3 c. Onion – chopped
1 T Butter
3 Eggs
2 c. Light Cream
1 c. Flour
1-1/2 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Pepper
1 tsp. Garlic – fresh, minced
2 T. Parsley – dried (or 1/4 c. fresh)
1/4 c. Parmesan Cheese- grated
2 c. Sharp Cheddar Cheese – shredded
2 oz. jar Pimentos – chopped, drained
2 tsp. Parsley – dried – for top
1 tsp. Paprika – for top
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray 10 in. quiche dish with cooking spray. Saute onions in butter and set aside. In large mixing bowl, beat eggs, cream, and flour until completely mixed. Add onion, garlic, salt, pepper, parsley, parmesan cheese, and 1-1/2 c. cheddar cheese. Mix well. Blend in corn and pimentos. Pour into prepared quiche dish and sprinkle the top with the rest of the cheddar cheese, parsley, and paprika. Bake at 375 degrees F for about 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Cut and serve. Optional – Garnish with fresh parsley and fresh orange slice.

Serves 8

Recipe by: Connie Shuff, York

First Place

2005 Pennsylvania “Simply Delicious, Simply Nutritious” Vegetable Recipe Contest
  • It’s official. Local #broccoli has been spotted at roadside stands and markets in #Pennsylvania. We’re having fun pulling unique recipes from our “contest vault” and thought this broccoli bread especially fit the bill. Have you ever tried baking broccoli into bread? Head to paveggies.org for more #paveggies inspiration, facts, and fun!

10 oz. Broccoli, fresh or frozen
4 oz Butter
1 Onion, small, chopped fine
1 c Cottage Cheese, small curd
3 Eggs
1 box Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
Yields 1 Loaf

Cut butter into small pieces. Break broccoli in the small pieces. Mix all ingredients and put in a 9” x 5” greased and floured pan. Bake at 400ºF for 30 minutes or until done.

Recipe by: Dorothy Martin, Conestoga

Finalist – Desserts/Breads

2004 Pennsylvania “Simply Delicious, Simply Nutritious” Vegetable Recipe Contest
  • Holy veggies! It’s already broccoli time?! PA Produce Month is just around the corner. August is the perfect time to celebrate and it’s easy to join in on the fun. We’ll be coming at you with ways to get in on the PA Produce Month action. Stay tuned for more #homegrown happiness ...and eat your local PA veggies for gosh sakes! 🌽 🍅 🥦 #repost @rt174roadside
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We are loving the #paveggies that are starting to come into season! They're delicious and make the best close-up shots! ⠀
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#rt174roadsidemarket #rt174roadside #mechanicsburgpa #papreferred #paveggies #paproduce #farmersmarket #buylocal #shoplocal #supportsmall #shopsmall #veggies #veggieseason
  • Remember to pick up dill from your local farmer if you plan to preserve this year’s bounty with pickling methods! #paveggies #pennsylvania #vegetables #veggies #homegrownhappiness #buyfreshbuylocal #bfbl #augustispaproducemonth #produce #preserve #pickle #dill #local #localfood #farmtotable #supportlocal #knowyourfarmer
  • This gingered zucchini recipe comes from our 2006 contest but a good recipe never goes out of style. Consider garnishing with a little fresh ginger too for an extra kick. Enjoy!

2 c. Zucchini – peeled and sliced
1 c. Onion – sliced
1 c. Tomatoes – chopped
2 T. Canola Oil
1/2 tsp. Ginger Powder
Salt – to taste

In a skillet, heat oil on medium heat. Add onions. Stir and cook until lightly brown. Add tomatoes. Stir and cook about 7 minutes. Add ginger powder and salt. Add zucchini. Stir and cook on medium to low heat until tender, about 12 to 15 minutes. Serve over rice or spread over toast.#paveggies #produce #homegrownhappiness #pennsylvania #veggies #vegetables #augustispaproducemonth #buyfreshbuylocal #bfbl #seasonal #eatwiththeseasons #farmtotable #zucchini #ginger #recipe
  • Kale is great but let’s not forget the original super green - spinach! It is a great source of protein, iron, and antioxidants. Spinach is quite easy to incorporate into recipes to give that meal an extra healthy boost. Bonus: it’s super easy to preserve too! Load up now from your local farmer and store some for winter when your body is craving extra nutrition. #paveggies #produce #homegrownhappiness #pennsylvania #veggies #vegetables #augustispaproducemonth #buyfreshbuylocal #bfbl #seasonal #eatwiththeseasons #farmtotable #spinach #healthy #antioxidants #iron #protein #preserve #freeze #superfood #sorrynotsorrykale
  • Too busy for veggies? A little meal prep goes a long way. Buy a little extra from your local farmer next time and make yourself some mason jar salads for the weekdays. The additional veggie intake will have you feeling great! #paveggies #produce #homegrownhappiness #pennsylvania #veggies #vegetables #salad #romaine #lettuce #tomato #onion #cucumber #healthy #mealprep #augustispaproducemonth #seasonal #eatwiththeseasons #farmtotable
  • Many recipes will call for just the white portion of a spring onion but we suggest finely chopping the green part to make a delightful garnish too. Our favorite prep tip for the spring onion? Roast the entire vegetable in the oven with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper. #paveggies #springonion #pennsylvania #vegetables #homegrownhappiness #produce #simplydelicious #onions #eatwiththeseasons #spring #veggies #augustispaproducemonth
  • We’ve already got beans on the mind. Which dish would you pick: bean salad with a homemade vinaigrette or sautéed beans with an aioli sauce? #paveggies #beans #homegrownhappiness #pennsylvania #vegetables

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