This recipe combines two ingredients plentiful this time of year - and answers the question, "What else can I do with all this zucchini?"


* 3 zucchini squash, cubed
* 1/2 cup chopped onion
* 2 to 3 tablespoons butter
* 1/2 cup chopped green New Mexican chile, roasted, peeled, stems removed
* 2 cups organic whole kernel corn 
* 1 cup heavy cream
* 1/4 cup grated Monterey Jack or cheddar cheese

Sauté the zucchini and onion in the butter until the squash is
tender.Add the chile, and corn, Simmer the mixture for 15 to 20
minutes to blend the flavors. Add the cream and heat through. Add the
cheese and heat until the cheese is melted.

Serves: 4 to 6

My New Favorite Brownies

One of the things I like to do occasionally is revisit old recipes and update them with healthier ingredients, like using butter or coconut oil instead of vegetable oils or shortening, or real whipped cream in a recipe that called for..that other stuff or even adding the fat and egg yolks back in to recipes that were 'lightened'. 

In the process, I think I discovered my new brownie recipe.  I used to make these a long time ago, then switched to another recipe that I used for years. It's chocolatey without being too sweet - and if you're a regular reader, you know how I feel about that. It also makes that smooth, crunchy crust on the top that was missing from the recipe I was using. It's also quick and easy since it's made with chocolate chips. 

As usual, I used Ghirardelli. The packages are no longer 12 ounces, so I used a full bag and part of another. You can add nuts if you like, or more chocolate chips to the batter before baking to make chocolate chip brownies. 


2/3 c. butter
1 1/2 c. sugar
4 tablespoons water
12 ounces Ghirardelli 60% dark chocolate chips
2 tsp vanilla
4 eggs
1 1/2 c. flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Butter 13 X 9 inch baking pan. Combine butter, sugar and water in a small saucepan and heat until butter is melted. Remove from heat, add chocolate chips and vanilla. Stir until smooth. Transfer to large bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Blend  in combined dry ingredients, and additional chips or nuts if you're using them.  Spread in prepared pan. 
Bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. 
Cool and cut into squares. 

Rose Petal Jam

Before last summer I'd never made any kind of jam or jelly. I'd cooked up some strawberries and peaches and made freezer jam, but it just isn't the same thing as a proper jam or jelly. Then I had a bumper crop of grapes (nearly 30 pounds from a single over-achieving vine) that there was no way we were going to get through before they spoiled.

We ate some, used some of them to make wine (fail) and the rest I made into grape jelly. I'd never made any kind of jam or jelly, so I did a lot of reading then tried it out with crab apples first. With each batch I learned from my mistakes and gained confidence to try making marmalade, and then eventually something, at least to me, more exotic.

While researching how to make jelly, I ran across a recipe for rose petal jam with intentions of trying it 'someday'. One of my favorite things about summer is cooking with flowers, so, when my roses started to bloom, I began collecting petals.

I used some of my own, some from a friend and purchased some dried culinary blooms.  I used a combination of varieties and an approximation of this recipe and was rewarded with a pint of jewel-colored, fragrant rose-flavored jelly. 

Rose Petal Jelly

1 3/4 cups water
1 oz rose petals
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons powdered pectin
1 cup sugar

In a medium saucepan, bring water up to a rolling boil. Add rose petals and boil 1 minute.  Cover the saucepan, turn the heat off, and steep the rose petals 30 minutes.  Strain the water through a cheesecloth-lined sieve, making sure to wring the cheesecloth to squeeze all the liquid from the petals. Transfer the rose water back to the saucepan.

Stir in the lemon juice, then whisk in the pectin and sugar until dissolved.  Bring to a boil on high heat and boil 5 minutes, stirring frequently.  Pour into sterile jars and allow to cool to room temperature. Store refrigerated.