What to do with over-ripe squash or zucchini from the garden

Into the oven or the compost? Tips on what to do with overgrown zucchini.

The squash is growing like mad—one of the frustrating things about living over 50 kilometres away from the trial garden at West Creek Farms. Lately a few Gaia college students from the Growing Food in the City course have been coming to harvest and share it amongst their friends.

The beautiful yellow zucchini pictured above is butterstick F1, seed from Renee’s Garden. This one has gotten too big. Though not always easy, it’s best to harvest zucchini when they are under 7″. If you let them get too big, seeds form in the cavity, the taste changes from sweet to mealy, with a watery texture, and the plant will stop producing flowers and fruit since its mandate is to reproduce itself. Pick ’em small.

But if the inevitable happens and you end up with overgrown zukes or squash, don’t worry. There are tons of recipes out there to help you make your way through your bounty.

If they really get out of hand (baseball bat size), just compost them – they have little flavour and a mealy texture.