Summer Fest: Cukes and Zukes

by in In Season, July 28, 2010

zucchini carpaccio

Summer Fest

We’re teaming up with other food and garden bloggers to host Summer Fest 2010, a season-long garden party. Each week we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. To join in, check out

Cucumbers and zucchini are in the same family, but they each have characteristics all their own. Cucumbers are classified based on whether they’re good for slicing and eating fresh or for pickling. We love cucumbers because of their nutritional benefits: Each medium cuke is 96 percent water and has only 40 calories, plus more than 60 percent of your daily vitamin K needs. Although you can find cucumbers at your market year-round, the peak season is from May through August. We love them in a simple cucumber salad — our nutritionist Toby’s version has only 5 ingredients!

Zucchini Bread Lightened Up
Dana's Lightened-Up Zucchini Bread

Zucchini is even more versatile — we love it sauteed, raw (think zucchini carpaccio) and of course, in lightened-up zucchini bread — our nutritionist Dana’s version is so delicious!  But don’t limit yourself to the fruits — the flowers are a farmers’ market delicacy when they’re stuffed with creamy ricotta, dipped in a light batter and pan-fried.

Squash Blossoms
Dana's Fried Squash Blossoms

More Cukes and Zukes with Family and Friends:

Join the conversation on twitter at #summerfood.

Liz Gray is the Healthy Eats site manager and an editor for When not foraging for mushrooms, she’s a part-time culinary student who loves to try new recipes and use her boyfriend, Josh, and hybrid Corgi-bulldog puppy, Miles, as expert taste-testers. Learn more about all our contributors »

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Comments (36)

  1. Check out my post on Zucchini Pasta with Chicken…my favorite summer dinner!

  2. Kathleen says:

    Beautiful salad, love all salads with cucumbers. This is a favorite for hot days Cucumber Pineapple Salad

  3. jgirlatlaw says:

    I made chicken meatballs with zucchini pasta last night.

  4. Linda V says:

    My mother makes what I guess you could call a cucumber salad, slice cucumbers add sour cream (doesn't work well with light) dill, and chives, and mix. I still make it and everyone who has it LOVES it.

  5. […] Liz from Food Network’s Healthy Eats discusses Health Benefits of Cucumbers and Zucchini […]

  6. […] Liz from Food Network’s Healthy Eats discusses Health Benefits of Cucumbers and Zucchini […]

  7. Estyn says:

    Yum!! I want to try the squash blossoms, they look so good.

    I made a cucumber salad with garlicky yogurt and dill

  8. Greg Kantner says:

    That zucchini bread looks awesome. I have my own version of the recipe on my site as well. Check out

  9. We live in Italy & own an organic farm, inn & cooking school specializing in farm to the table cooking classes- we've got loads of zucchini as well – Here is our version of the zucchini carpaccio –

  10. I just learned about Summer Fest 2010, and I think its a great way to share recipes, find other blogs we may not be familiar with and celebrate the bounty of summer produce. Here's a link to a recipe I posted 7/24 for Grilled Cheese & Zucchini Sandwiches:….

    Looking forward to participating in the remainder of Summer Fest 2010, with posts on my blog!

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