Although the temperatures have abated somewhat since my recent post on eating without cooking, we have a bunch of young zucchinis and yellow squashes that have lent themselves to this minimalist approach.
If it seems like it’s early for summer squashes, it is, a little–we took a chance when we planted some outside about 7 weeks ago, and it has paid off. Also, we all tend to like these squashes better when they’re still small, so we’re harvesting them earlier than others might.
Last week I brought home a handful of these dainty squashes, peeled them, then used the peeler to cut them into slender ribbons. I tossed these in a pesto (from the greenhouse) made of basil, almonds, lemon juice, olive oil, and garlic. A lovely side dish that could have been a main course if I’d had more squashes.
Later in the summer when we have bigger squashes, I’ll cut wider ribbons into a bowl and toss them with a lemon vinaigrette and some herbs. Topped with shaved parmigiano-reggiano cheese, it’s a great starter or lunch salad.
And while heat is involved in this preparation, it doesn’t count as cooking when it happens on a grill: I sliced a few small squashes lengthwise, brushed them with rosemary-infused olive oil, and grilled them alongside a flatiron steak from Arch River Farm that had been marinated in rosemary, lavender, lemon juice, garlic, and olive oil.
We expect to have a lot more summer squashes coming along, so if you have any suggestions for using them–especially with little or no cooking–feel free to add them to the comments.