Recipes and facts – Courgette

Courgettes are in fact a fruit by definition, and are versatile when cooking with them. They don’t even need to be cooked, and can be eaten raw!

Courgettes contain antioxidants, soluble and insoluble fibre, vitamin C, potassium and have a high water content.

They can be baked, fried, and of course eaten raw!

Recipes

Courgette Cake

Courgette Curry

Courgette, leek & goat’s cheese soup

Sesame, halloumi & courgette fritters with chilli honey drizzle

Chickpea & courgette pilaf

Courgette cake

  • 1tsp ground ginger
  • Pinch of grated nutmeg
  • 2 eggs
  • 170g/6oz sugar
  • 85ml/3lf oz sunflower oil
  • 1tsp vanilla essence
  • 225g/8oz grated courgettes
  • 75g/3oz chopped nuts (walnuts recommended)
  • Heat oven to 170C/325F/gas 3.

    Grease and line base of a 2lb loaf tin.

    Sift flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and spices.

    Beat eggs, add sugar, oil and vanilla essence.

    Add courgettes and walnuts.

    Make a well in centre of flour and pour in courgette mixture, mix well and pour into tin.

    Bake in the centre of the oven for 1 hour 30 mins. Don’t check on the cake for at least an hour and a quarter or it will sink in the middle!

    Check to see if it’s done – a skewer or sharp knife should come out clean.

    Take out of oven and leave to cool in tin for 10 minutes, then finish cooling on a rack.

    Delicious topped with cream cheese icing – just beat together some cream cheese and icing sugar and drizzle over the cake.

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    Courgette Curry – From GF Website

    • 3 medium courgettes
    • 2-3 tbsp sunflower oil
    • 1 red onion, halved and finely sliced
    • 1-2 red chillies (depending on preference), finely chopped
    • 40g ginger, peeled and finely grated
    • 4 garlic cloves, finely grated
    • 2 tsp garam masala
    • 1 tsp ground cumin
    • 1 tsp ground turmeric
    • 400g can chickpeas, drained
    • 400g can chopped tomatoes
    • 400g can coconut milk
    • cooked basmati rice, to serve

    Trim the ends of the courgettes, halve them lengthways and, using a teaspoon, scrape out the watery seeds in the centre (it’s fine if you don’t get all of them). Roughly slice the courgette halves, then roughly chop the seeds and reserve for later.

    Heat 2 tbsp oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat and fry the sliced courgettes until golden, about 8-10 mins. Remove from the pan, leaving the oil behind, then add the onion and a further tablespoon of oil if necessary, along with a good pinch each of salt and pepper. Fry for 6-8 mins until soft and just starting to turn a light brown, then tip in the chillies, ginger and garlic, and cook for 2 mins until starting to soften. Stir in the spices and cook for another 30 seconds.

    Scatter in the chickpeas and pour in the tomatoes, coconut milk and reserved courgette seeds. Simmer over a medium-low heat for 10 mins before adding the courgettes back to the pan and cooking for a further 8-10 mins. Serve with basmati rice and sides of your choice.

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    Courgette, leek & goat’s cheese soup – From GF Website

    • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
    • 400g leeks, well washed and sliced
    • 450g courgettes, sliced
    • 3 tsp vegetable bouillon powder, made up to 1 litre with boiling water
    • 400g spinach
    • 150g tub soft vegetarian goat’s cheese
    • 15g basil, plus a few leaves to serve
    • 8 tsp omega seed mix (see tip)
    • 4 x 25g portions wholegrain rye bread

    Heat the oil in a large pan and fry the leeks for a few mins to soften. Add the courgettes, then cover the pan and cook for 5 mins more. Pour in the stock, cover and cook for about 7 mins.

    Add the spinach, then cover the pan and cook for 5 mins so that it wilts. Take off the heat and blitz until really smooth with a hand blender. Add the goat’s cheese and basil, then blitz again.

    If serving in bowls, scatter with some extra basil leaves and the seeds, and eat with the rye bread.

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    Sesame, halloumi & courgette fritters with chilli honey drizzle – From GF Website

    • 2 medium courgettes, grated
    • ½ tsp sea salt, plus extra to serve
    • 30g self-raising flour
    • 20g rice or cornflour
    • 2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
    • ¼ tsp ground white pepper
    • 2 tsp mint leaves, finely chopped
    • 80g halloumi, grated
    • 2 large eggs
    • 2 spring onions, finely sliced
    • vegetable oil, for frying

    For the chilli honey drizzle:

    • 2 tbsp honey
    • ½ tsp pul biber or other chilli flakes
    • 2 lemons, zested

    To make the chilli honey drizzle, warm the honey, 2 tbsp water, chilli flakes and lemon zest in a small pan until bubbling and syrupy, about 3 mins. Put the courgettes in a sieve and sprinkle over the salt. Allow to drain for 30 mins, then use your hands to squeeze out the liquid – you want them as dry as possible.

    Combine the flours, sesame seeds and pepper in a bowl. Add the mint, halloumi and courgette, and toss lightly to combine. Crack in the eggs and use a fork to stir them into the mixture along with the spring onions. Stir until you have a thick batter.

    Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large, heavy-bottomed non-stick frying pan and swirl to coat the base. Add 2 heaped tbsp of the batter for each fritter, flattening them down with a spatula, and fry for a couple of minutes until golden. Flip them over and press down with the spatula, then fry for another few minutes until golden and cooked all the way through. Drain on kitchen paper and season with a few flakes of sea salt. Drizzle with the chilli honey to serve.

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    Chickpea & courgette pilaf – From GF Website

    • 4 tbsp vegetable oil sunflower oil or olive oil, plus a drizzle to serve
    • 1 onion, finely chopped
    • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
    • ½ tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
    • 2 tsp ground cumin
    • 300g long-grain rice
    • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
    • 2 medium courgettes (about 300g), cut into 1cm slices
    • 2 x 400g cans chickpeas, drained
    • pinch of chilli flakes, or to taste (optional)
    • small bunch of dill, mint or parsley, roughly chopped

    Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a pan over a medium heat and cook the onion for 8-10 mins until softened. Add the garlic and spices, and cook for 2 mins more until fragrant. Tip in the rice and 450ml boiling water from the kettle along with the lemon zest and ½ tsp salt. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 20 mins, or until all the water has been absorbed and the rice is cooked through. This process can also be done in the oven: cook everything in a flameproof casserole and transfer to the oven once the rice and water has been added, covering and cooking for 20-25 mins at 190C/170C fan/gas 5.

    Heat the rest of the oil in a second pan over a medium-high heat and fry the courgette slices for 4 mins until slightly coloured and the edges are just softened. Stir in the chickpeas and cook for 2 mins more until warmed through. Season well.

    When the rice is cooked through, add half the lemon juice and fluff up the rice with a fork. Add the chilli flakes, if using, and chopped dill to the courgette and chickpea mixture. Season well. Stir in the remaining lemon juice and a drizzle of oil. Serve the rice with the courgettes.

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