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Zucchini

A Brief Introduction
Zucchini or Courgette is a variety of summer squash with smooth and dark green skin. Its cylindrical shape resembles a cucumber. Along with some other squashes, it belongs to the species Cucurbita pepo. Courgette is the British, and particularly the New Zealand name for zucchinis. It can be yellow, green or light green, and generally has a similar shape to a ridged cucumber. However, certain cultivars can produce round or bottle-shaped fruit. This this oval squash-like gourd is also known by the name of "vegetable marrow," in some parts of the world. Like all summer squash, Zucchini also has its ancestry in the Americas.

 

The Americans and the Australians know this moderately long cylindrical summer squash by the name of Zucchini; whereas the Britons and the New Zea-landers know this green-skinned crop as courgette. Zucchini is perhaps the best known and most popular of the summer squashes. It can be steamed, grilled, sautéed, deep-fried, and baked. Zucchini is a member of the cucurbit family and is related to watermelons, gherkins and cucumbers.

In a culinary context, zucchini is treated as a vegetable, which means it is usually cooked and presented as a savory dish or accompaniment. Botanically, however, the zucchini is an immature fruit, being the swollen ovary of the female zucchini flower.

 

Nutritional Value & Benefits
Being a good source of Vitamin A, Zucchini is regarded as a healthy food by the global dietitian fraternity. Low in calories, these cylindrical shaped fruits also contain a healthy supply of manganese, folate, and potassium. They’re often a great food if you’re dieting, since manganese is known for its ability to speed up the metabolism.

Growing Zucchini Plant
It is one of the easiest vegetables to cultivate in temperate climates. You do need to plant two plants since the squash depends upon cross-pollination by honeybees in order to fruit. A single plant is capable of growing an impressive amount of zucchinis.

 

Culinary Uses
As a versatile vegetable, zucchini can be steamed, grilled, sautéed, deep-fried, and baked. Their fresh and delicate flavour make them perfect for various culinary purposes. Their slices are widely used into stews and soups. They performed extremely well when used in pasta sauce or in spicy zucchini bread or muffins. On a few occasions, they are used in preparing desserts. Additionally you can make zucchini pancakes that are savory, or use zucchini in lasagna. In Italy, zucchini are served in a variety of ways, especially breaded and pan-fried. In France zucchini is a key ingredient in Ratatouille, a stew of summer vegetables in olive oil, cooked for an extended time over low heat.

 
 
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