Zucchini, You Can Eat the Stems, Too.

Upper left: Peeled Zucchini stem on left, unpeeled on right. Lower left: Stems cut into penne shape. Upper right: Blanching cut stems in salt water. Lower right: Blanched stems glazed with butter, sherry, and stock. Center: Finished dish with sauce and parmesan.

You’ll find zucchini in a lot of local gardens. The squash is yummy and nutritious, but also grows quickly and is an early garden producer which usually produces its low calorie fruit in abundance. Zucchini recipes abound almost as much as the fruit itself.  But did you know that you can eat the stems, too? A relative recently passed along a recipe for Zucchini Stem “Penne” which we tried out today. The zucchini production is over for the year for us, but we still had several large zucchini vines sprawling in their corner of the garden. Our stems were old and large. The consistency of the resulting “penne” is a bit more like celery than pasta, but it makes for an interesting dish and is definitely good to know if you need to squeeze all the food and calories from your garden that you can. Our two- and four-year old kids enjoyed it. We’ll try it again next year with some younger stems and see if there is a tenderness difference.

Zucchini Penne Recipe