The origin of the zucchini is not entirely clear. It was not widely eaten in Europe before the twentieth century and some sources claim that it was developed from the squash. Squash have been cultivated in Central America for more than five thousand years and zucchini play a prominent role in Mexican cuisine today.
A member of the cucurbit family, zucchini are related to watermelons, gherkins and cucumbers. Zucchini are usually marrows harvested at a young age, although the mature fruit of certain varieties of squash may also be sold as zucchini.
Zucchini have a high water content and are low in calories. They are a source of folate, potassium, and vitamins A and C.
Zucchini flowers can often be found on the menus of French or Italian restaurants. Smaller flowers are given a tempura treatment (fried in a light batter); larger flowers are typically stuffed with tomatoes and herbs or goat's cheese.
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widespread in temperate regions
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