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The Best Way to Cook Zucchini

By Cook's Illustrated Published September 2008

Zucchini dishes often don't get much attention and taste rather dull. Here's how to maximize flavor with minimal work.

Shopping Notes

Zucchini weighing less than 8 ounces are more flavorful and less watery than larger ones.

Preparation

Shred, discarding seeds and core, then salt and squeeze dry.

Basic Cooking Method

Shredding, salting (use 1 1/2 teaspoons salt with 2 1/2 pounds zucchini), and squeezing removes moisture from this watery vegetable, as does a dry-heat cooking method, like sautéing. Toss dried zucchini with 2 teaspoons olive oil and then cook in 12-inch nonstick skillet filled with 2 teaspoons additional oil over high heat for 4 minutes. Stir infrequently as zucchini cooks to promote browning.

1. Cut zucchini into 3-inch pieces. Shred on large holes of box grater, rotating zucchini as needed to avoid shredding seeds and core.

2. Toss zucchini with salt in colander and drain 10 minutes. Wrap zucchini in kitchen towel, in batches, and wring out excess moisture.