Zucchini

The zucchini or courgette is a fruit vegetable and is botanically designated in the berry plant family.  The zucchini is a type of garden pumpkin or squash, and its Italian name, “zucchetti, “means, “little pumpkin.”

It comes from Western India and Mexico.  In the German-speaking regions, it only became popular around 1970. This vegetable has a typical fruit stem measuring from ten to forty centimetres in length, is light green to dark green with tiny yellow-white speckles. Newer varieties are also bright yellow or light green and pear-shaped.  Its pulp has a very subtle taste; however, the zucchini can sometimes have a bitter taste, too.  The bitter taste is created when the plant does not have enough water during a dry period.  There are other varieties that contain the bitter-tasting cucurbitacine as well; from backcrossing with ornamental forms.  Therefore, you should try zucchini before cooking it:  If it tastes bitter, don’t use it.  Zucchini should not be stored with together with tomatoes or fruit because they secrete ethylene which leads to zucchini spoiling quickly.  Zucchini is sensitive to cold and should not be kept below 7°C.

Season: From July to September

Nutritional Value: Zucchini – Swiss food composition database

 

Did you know...?

Beta-carotene is one of the most important elements of zucchini.

1 portion a day corresponds to:

A small zucchini