Before this season, I would have said that we couldn’t grow cucurbits well in our garden. While everyone else was overrun with zucchini and cucumber, our plants struggled to produce the odd fruit.
Linda assured me that it would happen one day – and that it was largely a product of the climate and the growing season more than anything else. I think experience plays a big part though – we hadn’t realised the amount of space and water these plants needed.
This year, expecting only the low yield we’d had in previous years, we planted three Lebanese zucchini seedlings, four Lebanese cucumbers, and four tromboncinos.
And we’ve had a joyous abundance of produce! The cucumbers have grown well in their pot, and the zucchinis and tromboncinos are producing daily pickings. Still not to glut proportions, but more than enough for our daily eating.
We’re now in the enviable position of trying to manage it all, and I have to be creative, or the boys will notice that they’re eating the same vegetable every night for dinner. My latest attempt was tromboncino bhajis, which Pete and I really liked…
I grated one medium sized tromboncino (a zucchini would work too) and mixed it with:
- besan (chickpea) flour (I didn’t measure accurately, but it was probably about ¾ cup)
- 1 small grated onion
- a little turmeric
- chilli powder
- a little sifted bicarb of soda (baking soda)
After stirring all the ingredients together, I added water gradually to create a batter. You don’t want it too sloppy, but if it’s too dry, the finished bhajis will be a little tough.
Preheat a neutral oil to 180C (deep fry temperature) and then drop in a scoop of the batter and deep fry until golden brown. Taste the first bhaji, and adjust seasoning as required before cooking the rest of the batter…
I mentioned these to Linda who sent me the tromboncino seeds and who is herself overrun with them at the moment. She planned to make the bhajis and serve them with cucumber raita – a two cucurbit meal!