I don’t know how I missed them, but one day they were just blossoms, and the next day I had forty zucchinis fat as my thigh.
So I harvested ’em. No science to it, just identify, twist, and pull. They come off easy if they’re ripe, I think. From what I understand from a chef’s perspective, zucchini are better when they’re small. The larger they get, the dryer they tend to be on the inside. But there’s something so thrilling about growing a huge zucchini, so I just let them gorge on all that vine juice until they’re ready for plucking. It’s also deeply satisfying to know that I can grow something so enormous by pure organic efforts alone. (!!!!!)
Advice to the would-be farmer who knows nothing (like me): zucchini fruit and their bushes pose tiny fiberglass-like thorns that will scratch the shit out of you. They fall away as soon as you touch them. I advise handling the whole plant with gloves and giving the fruit a good wash before prepping. I’ve spent the last two days hunched beneath the skirts of those beasts and my arms itch as badly as skin that came into contact with poison oak. Even the fruit itself has tiny pokers, invisible by shadow, translucent in light.
To cook enormous zukes: roast, grill, or make zucchini boats. (Jon and I dubbed them ‘Missouri Thermidor.’)