Recipe: Zucchini soup

It is reported that zucchini have Vitamin A and Vitamin C and all kinds of health benefits from being good for your eyes, to helping to prevent prostate cancer. I’m all for it. If you’re cooking dinner and you can squash in extra protection against Lord-knows-what’s-out-there, why not?
The best zucchini are about six inches long, pale green and ridged. If you can’t find them, do the best you can. Buy small, firm and bursting with youth. Saute two minced shallots or one small onion with 2 cloves of garlic and the yellow only of a strip of lemon zest. Move this around a heavy saute pan with the best olive oil you can get your hands on, a few red pepper flakes, a few fresh basil leaves and a flat leafed parsley sprig until the onion is so tender and delicious you could cry. A little caramelization is okay. It should take about 15 minutes. Add the zucchini, in a half inch dice and saute without stirring for the first five minutes. Add salt and a grind of pepper. Remove the lemon rind. When the zucchini is tender, add water, homemade vegetable stock or homemade chicken stock, just to cover. Bring to a gentle simmer, then turn off the heat. Puree with an immersion blender until nearly smooth. Return to the heat and a spill of heavy cream. Taste for salt and pepper. Serve with shavings of Parmigiano Reggiano.

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