It’s COURGETTE SEASON!! Or zucchini season if you’re from across the pond… At least, I think it’s zucchini season, my global seasonal fruit and veg knowledge isn’t quite up to scratch.
My little tiny veggie patch is looking rather sad for a variety of different reasons this year – the most obvious one being that I haven’t actually planted anything besides some lettuce! But that hasn’t stopped me revelling in the delightful ‘copious courgette crop’ that grips country-dwellers at this time of year.
I’ve been VERY lucky, and very grateful, to be on the receiving end of some rather large courgettes (waheey!) this year – some of them more like marrows… I love ’em ALL.
Here’s the quick Bella-down-low on why these beauts are faffing fabulous:
- They’re a great source of vitamins C and A, potassium and fibre – so they’re a friend to your immune system, your eyes, your blood pressure, and your gut (for a start)…
- They’re mainly made up of water (#hydration, my favourite hobby horse) and are low calorie (not that I’m a huge fan of calorie counting, but it’s good to know these things).
- They’re versatile when it comes to cooking – so you can add them to a LOT of different sweet or savoury recipes and get a little extra nutritional bang for your buck.
- If you’re trying to watch the number of carbs you’re eating, courgettes are a great substitute.
I know a lot of folk who struggle to know what to do with a load of courgettes – so, whether you’re buying yours from the shop, bringing them straight in from the garden, or an allotment stalker (like me), here are a few of my favourite simple, healthy recipes to use up your stash – I’ve included ones for breakfast, lunch and dinner…
Healthy courgette recipes
Find the recipe here. They’re lovely. Great for brekkie, or as a snack.
2. Minted courgette soup (Serves 4-6)
So fresh and tasty – a good one for the fridge and freezer
- 1 tbsp coconut oil, olive oil or rapeseed oil
- 1kg courgettes (any colour), thinly sliced
- Salt and pepper
- Zest of ½ lemon
- 8 sprigs of fresh mint
- 1.4 litres of vegetable stock
- 1 handful cashew nuts
- Greek yoghurt and mixed
- seeds to serve
Heat up the oil in a non-stick pot and then add the courgettes. If you have time, turn the heat right down – cooking the courgettes slowly so they retain their sweetness. But if you don’t have time, just cook at normal speed. Add in the mint and the lemon zest and season to taste. Stirring every now and then, gently cook the courgettes until they’re a mushy mess.
Once they’re cooked, turn the heat up and pour in the stock and cashew nuts. Bring to the boil then remove from the heat. Either use a hand blender or pour into a jug blender or processor to blitz. Careful, it will be hot!! You might need to do this in batches. Pour into bowls (and some into a container suitable for freezing). Serve with the Greek yoghurt and sprinkling of seeds.
3. Creamy asparagus courgetti (Serves 2)
- 1 red onion, diced
- 200g mushrooms, sliced
- 1 handful asparagus, sliced into rounds
- ¼ cup (80g) ricotta cheese or another soft cheese (like Philly)
- Juice ½ lemon
- 2 tsp dijon mustard
- 2 tsp wholegrain mustard
- Fresh parsley
For the courgetti:
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 large courgette, spiralised into noodles. If you don’t have a spiraliser, you can either buy courgetti in the prepared veg aisle of some supermarkets or you can make your own thicker noodles by peeling a courgette with a veg peeler.
- 1 cup frozen peas
Optional for meat eaters: 4 rashers of lean bacon
Heat coconut oil in a non-stick frying pan, then fry the mushrooms and asparagus (and bacon if having) until cooked. Take them out of the pan for a moment while you make the sauce.
Turn the heat down under the frying pan and add the cheese, lemon juice and both mustards. Mix 2 tbsp of water in to thin it slightly. Let it come to a gentle simmer, then put the veg back in the pan and warm through.
While that’s warming through, gently warm the olive oil in a frying pan. Add the courgette noodles and the frozen peas and move around the pan until the peas are cooked. Season asparagus and mushroom mix with black pepper and sprinkle over the parsley and serve with the courgetti! Bonus points if you add some more green veg to the plate too.