Zucchini is a versatile member of the squash family that can be eaten raw with vegetable dip, grated and put into cakes, breads and muffins, or cut them in half and used as a serving vessel for a multitude of main dishes. If you simply cut up the zucchini into cubes, it makes an excellent addition to a shish kabob or side dish when roasted in the oven.
Wash the zucchini thoroughly under cold or lukewarm water. Cut 1/4 inch off each end. Peeling the zucchini is optional; the skin is edible and adds color to your dish, but does add a slightly bitter taste to the zucchini. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the skin if desired.
Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise. Removing the seeds is another option. It is a matter of personal preference.
Cut each half lengthwise with the cuts being approximately 1 inch apart. Then cut the slices horizontally to make 1-inch cubes. Serve the zucchini with dip or cook it by grilling or roasting.
Parboil the squash for five minutes. It facilitates the squash cooking evenly on the grill.
Cube the zucchini and thread it on the skewers. Alternate with eggplant, tomato and summer squash leaving 1/4 inch between pieces for even cooking.
Grill over medium heat for 10 minutes. The vegetables will be soft, but still firm, when done.
Toss cubed zucchini with just enough olive oil to lightly coat the pieces. The amount of oil will vary with the amount of zucchini; start with 1 tbsp. and add more if necessary.
Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper and place in a 400-degrees Fahrenheit oven for 25 minutes or until zucchini is lightly browned.
Serve as a side dish. The roasted pieces can also be added to a fresh salad.
Annabelle Lee has been working in the journalism field since 1990. She was a teacher and yearbook adviser for four years and holds two associate degrees from her local community college where she currently teaches computer classes. Lee also writes for a local newspaper and was a proofreader for McGraw-Hill.