A few days ago I picked the last three heirloom zucchini in my garden. While all the other zucchini plants were destroyed back in June by unwelcome nocturnal visitors to my garden (either wild boars or deer, we never discovered which), the heirloom vines survived. Throughout the summer they climbed around in all sorts of unexpected places, and provided us with many a zucchini.
The last three zucchini for the season were all in different parts of the garden: one was hanging down from a shrub, a second was curled up on the ground, and the third was half way up a stone wall. I picked them with great reverence for the strong and prolific vines, and decided that they deserved a very special dish to celebrate their strength and tenacity. So I dusted off my hand-cranked pasta machine, and made heirloom zucchini lasagna.
I haven't used this machine in a long time, because making pasta by hand takes time. Not just working time, but also lots of waiting periods while the dough 'sits', while the pasta sheets dry out a little, and so on. To have lasagna ready by dinner time, I had to make the dough in the morning, and work on it throughout the afternoon.
During pauses in the pasta-making, I had to attend to other things. Son & daughter's work out in the garden needed to be directed (they were deconstructing the tomato supports, and pulling out the plants), panicked WhatsApp messages from my younger sister needed cooking advice (she was making bread for the first time), phone calls, laundry ... well, you all know the endless laundry story. Fact is, the lasagna-making lasted the whole day, but only went in fits and starts (which accounts for the fact that I kept postponing taking photos, and in the end I never did)(though I did remember to take a photo of the tagliatelle I made with the leftover pasta dough - I believe they should be eaten with the last pesto of the season!).
The heirloom zucchini found their perfect place in homemade lasagna. In fact, I'm rather sorry I waited so long to take my pasta machine out - zucchini season is over now, but pasta season lasts all year, and I don't intend to store my machine away again to gather dust.