The Idiot Gardener

Hung like a donkey

courgettes

For me, the courgette is something dark green, about five to six inches long, and around an inch to two inches in diameter. Some of the Yankee Doodles might at this point think “that sounds like a zucchini”, but despite what some might have us think, the two are the same thing. It’s strange that the Hingerlish use the word courgette, as it is Fr*nch in origin. Zucchini is, of course, Italian. Same fruit, different national identities.

Here’s some fun facts about the Italians. In the war, they switched sides, and all their tanks only had reverse gears. Here’s some fun facts about the Fr*nch. They burn sheep, they surrender, and they planted avenues of trees so the Germans could march in the shade. Maybe, all things considered, we need a new name for the courgette/zucchini. Maybe it could be the courchini, or even the zuccette. Either way, I figured that during my great cucurbit debacle, my courchinis would fail.

I got a bit excited when I saw some flowers, but no fruit followed. Then I saw some flowers with fruit, and I did celebrate like a blind man who has just discovered his dog knows the way to the knocking shop. As an aside, did you hear about the blind prostitute? You’ve got to hand it her! Where was I? Oh yes, I did celebrate my fruit until someone pointed out that it would wither and die without pollination.

I had two choices. The first was to ponce about in the garden with a pastry brush, and the second was to trust fate and let the bees do their thing. As the pub was open and I’d already got changed, I decided to leave things in the hands of Mother Nature. It seems that the bees did good. Well, a few of them did good.

I started by explaining that the courgette is something dark green, about five to six inches long, and around an inch to two inches in diameter. Well, one out of three ain’t bad! Mine are around and inch to two inches in diameter. However, dark green they ain’t, and ithe big one is currently about a foot long and growing! It raises a smirk from me every time I see it, because I never really grew up properly. Jokes about bums and willys still make me laugh, and that courgette … well, you have to give it some respect.

As another aside, the other day I ate my first scalloped squash. I sauted them with a little butter. They had a sweet squash flavour, along with a taste akin to homemade chips. Now, I’m not talking about homemade chips today, made with healthy oil in a deep fat fryer. I am talking about those home made chips that your Mum used to make on a winter’s day, when you were about ten years old. You’d come in from school, your skin burning with the cold, and she’d be making chips. Even before you’d applied the salt and vinegar, you’d eat that first one, red hot and scorching in your tongue. That’s the taste they had!

Despite the death, the disease and the misery, I am starting to view the cucurbit in a slightly different way!

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20 thoughts on “Hung like a donkey

  1. Edith Hope

    Dear IG, You may indeed be viewing courgettes in a different way. Having read [and interpreted] this, I most certainly am!!

    Although you have said that pollination was, finally, left to the bees, since your departure into the world of punk and cookery, I rather like the idea of your ‘poncing’ around the garden with a pastry brush in hand. Could such an action not be set to music by the Sex Pistols as a reinterpretation of a Frederick Ashton ballet?

  2. Turling

    The pollination angle left many chances for visuals to be offered that I would just assume not, well, visualize. Thanks for letting that one go.

  3. Is the Wiz

    Dear Idiot, I do like that word “zuccette”. But when is a courgette not a courgette (or even a zucchini)?
    When, mesmerised by the ever increasing girth, you leave it so long it turns into a marrow.

  4. Aimee

    We just got back from a three week trip to Mexico, where there are many donkeys. Let me say, your largest courgette doesn’t hold a candle to the most modest donkey pizzle. Here’s a funny story, and true. While riding in the car through a small Mexican village, my six year old daughter yelled out “Look, a donkey! ….. eeewwwww, it’s a boy.” Looking out the window and seeing the donkey’s business hanging down to the ground, we all burst out laughing. My daughter, blushing deep red, said, “no, no… I can tell by it’s ears!”

    “I can tell by the ears” is destined to become one of those family one-liners that lasts a generationj or two.

  5. Amy

    What a nice mom…greeted you at the door with chips for an after school snack. I have never had homemade chips with salt and vinegar. Almost sounds better than the squash. Also, what was your post about again…a blind prostitute knocking on the door or was it a blind man trying to find his dog? OMG..i’m so confused.
    Glad you trusted fate.

  6. Meredith

    IG, I was a little apprehensive about opening this post, but the sight of the zucchini reassured me immediately — and as always, you make me laugh. Congrats on your bountiful harvest. I’m happy for you. :D

  7. rzashida

    What A interesting blog! There are so many different kinds of squash this is the first I’ve seen of this variety. I love your sense of humor.

  8. jeansgarden

    In the United States, it’s not uncommon for courchinis to hide when you are trying to harvest them at a desirable size. And then, while your back is turned, or you are at the pub, or even sleeping, they grow to be the size of baseball bats! -Jean

  9. joey

    Admiring your harvest! Aways an education, IG … have never heard zucchini referred to as courgettes (where have I been … and I’m a French Yankee Doodle)! I love scalloped squash but zucchini cashew pie is my favorite!

  10. thyme2garden

    Well, I thought I grew up properly, but apparently not, because I laughed when I saw your post title, laughed some more when I saw the picture, and then couldn’t stop giggling all the way though your post.

  11. debsgarden

    We call them zucchini here, and they are so prolific that if you plant one you’ll be cooking it every way known to man and so will your neighbor. I like zucchini bread best, and I also like it fried, no doubt tasting much like your chips.

  12. Britta

    Dear IG, as the wonderful cook you are you’ll know that with courgettes size does matter – but: pin the tail on the donkey: the cook prefers them small!
    Reminds me of Eeyore: ‘Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, “Why?” and sometimes he thought, “Wherefore?” and sometimes he thought “Inasmuch as which?” – and sometimes he didn’t quite know what he was thinking about.’
    Donkey’s tail perhaps, semantics of zucchettes, or the world as such? Britta

  13. Faith Kolean

    Hi Ig, I had to quit reading your lurid posts where my husband may see them lest he make fun of me for reading such trash. He just doesn’t understand that it’s garden trash! These overly provocative headers are just too much. Anyway, google the term “oosik definition.” Alaskan Y’upiks never heard of courgettes or zucchini, but they have a name for them. hahahaha.

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