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A version of this story appears in the Feb. 23, 2012, edition of the Rutland County Express.

Over the years, I’ve cooked through the cannon of Sabataso family recipes. I’ve made holiday dishes like Spaghetti Olio and baccalà, which traditionally only appear on Christmas or when important Italians like Sinatra the Pope show up.

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Recently, Herald editor and occasional food critic Randal Smathers penned a none-too-flattering piece about the zucchini — a Dylanesque jeremiad that nearly reached “Positively 4th Street” levels of contempt.

In his opinion, the veggie is overabundant, flavorless and ultimately unwanted — a scourge of summer gardens that growers are only too eager to pawn off to friends and enemies alike.

While the piece gave me a chuckle, I had to take exception to his assertion that only “one-in-10,000” people actually like zucchini. I personally know many zucchini lovers out there who openly celebrate their love for the great, green gourd. (Some town even go as far as to hold festivals for it.)

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