Harvest time is virtually over for everyone but retired butcher Armand DiGeronimo of Novelty, OH; his summertime Sicilian zucchini will be the talk of the town into winter because of their colossal size. The seeds donated from a St. Anselm Catholic Church parishioner skyrocketed into a champion-sized (over five-feet-long) tubular vegetable and the ensuing seeds may lead to even more spectacular sizes next growing season.
The pale, long, green zucchini grow on the average of about four feet and climb up trees and dangle there until picked. The Sicilian zucchini, cucuzza, are usually prepared in stews and sautéed, sliced and even deep fried.
Admittedly, the taste of this green exterior and white flesh vegetable is rather bland and it certainly helps to add spices. DiGeronimo adds flavors with garden varieties of tomatoes and pepper plants. The 90-year-old gardener satisfies his sweet tooth with flourishing figs which ripen during the fall. That doesn’t come easy because the fig bushes need to be buried or wrapped every winter to survive the frigid blasts.
Digeronimo is also a retired GM from Chippewa Lake in Medina County and in his much younger years served with the Marines.