Spent the weekend in Philly visiting family and attending my high school reunion. Whenever I come for a visit, I ask dad what he would like me to make for him and almost always he answers, “Mom’s zucchini stew”.
This is one of those recipes that has been passed from one generation to the next. Mom made this recipe in the summer when we received an abundance of zucchini and summer squash from my grandma’s farm stand. The farm stand is still in operation (65 years) and is run by my cousin Andrea. Check it out.
I head out to shop for the ingredients at the local ACME Market and find out that they do not have Lancaster Sweet Italian Sausage in stock. Just so you know, this is the only sausage brand my family buys. So, this causes an issue and I travel to two more ACME Markets only to encounter the same issue. Finally, I just head to Giant and purchase another local brand: Hatfield. So, now I must keep this from the family. In the end I come clean, but only after the meal.
Dad, as always, tells me the stew tastes just like Mom’s and, as always, I think it’s missing something. I think it’s Mom’s love.
Mom’s Zucchini Stew
- 6 medium zucchini washed and diced into chunky slices and then halved or quartered as needed (reference above image)
- 3 medium summer squash washed and diced into chunky slices and then halved or quartered as needed (reference above image)
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic chopped
- 3 celery stalks chopped
- 3 carrots chopped (large)
- 4 28 ounce cans of crushed tomato
- 1 28 ounce can of diced tomato or three or four fresh, diced tomatoes (depends on size)
- 3 packages of sweet Italian sausage
- A shake of crushed red pepper
- A few pinches of dried basil and parsley
- Salt to taste
Bring a large stock pot to boil. Add sausage. Cook sausage for 10 to 15 minutes. Then use tongs to remove sausage from the pot. It will be very hot. Then broil sausage for 15 minutes. In another large stock pot sauté the onion for five to seven minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for about two minutes. Add the tomatoes, basil, parsley, crushed red pepper and salt. Then add the broiled and cut sausage to the tomato sauce. Bring it to a boil and then simmer while preparing the zucchini, squash, celery and carrots. Add the vegetables and stir. This will cook on medium low until the vegetables are soft but not mushy. Frequently stir and remove the lid if the sauce is getting to watery.
Enjoy with a nice crusty slice of bread. There are some great gluten free bread recipes out there, but I use a Schar Multigrain Ciabatta roll.
To make this recipe vegan eliminate the sausage. This is the way I make it for myself.
The leftovers can be frozen or enjoyed with poached eggs.