The sections below were copied with permission from Mi Ae Lipe’s Tastes from the Valley to Bluff: The Featherstone Farm Cookbook (2008).
Summer squashes are surprisingly perishable; avoid washing them until just before using, and keep them wrapped in a plastic bag in the refrigerator vegetable crisper for up to 4 days. Try to avoid bruising or puncturing the delicate skin, which can lead to decay.
Complementary Herbs, Seasonings, & Foods
Basil, beans, butter, cheese, chives, cinnamon, cloves, corn, cream, curry powder, dill, garlic, marjoram, mint, nutmeg, onions, pepper, rosemary, sage, sausage, tomatoes.
• Add peeled summer squash cubes to soups, stews, beans, gratins, and vegetable ragouts, Serve chunks or slices of summer squash, sauté with onion in butter, and combine with milk, eggs, and seasonings. Top with butter and cracker crumbs, and bake in a 450°F oven for 15 minutes, or until the casserole is golden brown.
• Serve chunks or slices of summer squash with other raw vegetables and your favorite dips and dressings.
• Finely grate or shred summer squash, sauté with onion in butter, and combine with milk, eggs, and seasonings. Top with butter and cracker crumbs, and bake in a 450°F oven for 15 minutes, or until the casserole is golden brown.
• Make a hearty one-dish meal of squash lasagne, combining summer squash, layers of meat, cheese, and noodles. Serve with salad and fruit.
• Shred summer squash with carrots, cucumbers, and cabbage for an unusual coleslaw.
• Thinly slice summer squash to substitute for cucumbers in sandwiches.
• Slice summer squashes in half and grill for 3 to 4 minutes on either side on the hottest part of the grill. Chunks of squash are terrific in shish kebobs.
• Make a batch of ratatouille by combining summer squash, eggplant, tomatoes, onions, garlic, herbs, and olive oil, and cooking slowly to reduce the liquid.
• Add diced summer squash to salads and pasta dishes.
• Bake sliced summer squash that has been brushed with melted butter and sprinkled with lemon pepper at 400°F for 20 to 25 minutes, or until tender.
• Sauté coins of summer squash with zucchini and other squashes of contrasting colors -- yellow and light green, for instance -- and dress with fresh herbs and garlic for a lovely summer dish.
• Of course if all else fails, make that old standby -- squash bread or muffins. Be sure to decrease the amount of liquid in the recipe by about a third to compensate for the vegetable's moisture.
Cook out of the Box - Focus: Zucchini
Cook out of the Box - Tried and True: Ratatouille
Cook out of the Box - Tried and True: Zucchini Bread
Cook out of the Box - Tried and True: Vegetable Pancakes
Farm Journal: "Beet, Zucchini, and New Projects!"
Summer Squash Casserole
1 1/2 pounds yellow summer squash (or zucchini), cut into 1/2 inch pieces
3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs
2 T. melted butter
1/4 cup minced onion or shallot
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 t. salt
1/2 t. freshly ground pepper
2 t. sugar
1/2 cup grated sharp cheddar or other cheese - optional
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley- optional
Cook the squash in a small amount of boiling water until it is just tender - about 8-10 minutes. Drain well. (save cooking water for vegetable stock) Combine the crumbs and melted butter - set aside half. Mix all ingredients except the reserved buttered crumbs. Pour into a greased baking dish. Bake at 375 degrees about 40 minutes - until the squash mixture is puffed and the crumbs are golden brown.
Credit: Cook out of the Box 2010 - Week 6
Summer Saute with Pasta
Bring pasta water to a boil and cook the pasta while you are working on the vegetables. Saute the following in olive oil: onion or garlic; summer squash, cut into little sticks (batons if you want to be swanky); sweet bell pepper (diced or sliced); corn kernels. Stir in a spoonful or two of pesto if you have it or else just add a generous handful of sliced basil. Cover for a few minutes until all vegetables are soft. Add a little pasta cooking water if too dry. Serve over cooked pasta (linguine is nice).
Credit: Cook out of the Box 2010 - Week 12
Zucchini Bread (makes one large loaf in a 9 x 5 pan)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl -
2 1/4 cups flour (you can use all or part whole wheat pastry flour. You can also add a tablespoon or two or three of something like bran or ground flaxseed. Just decrease the amount of flour accordingly.
2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 cup white sugar and 1/2 cup brown sugar (You could probably cut back on this depending on your tastes. I would not cut more than 1/2 cup total)
Mix wet ingredients in another bowl:
1/3 c. oil (walnut or hazelnut oil would be nice. Even a light olive oil) or melted butter
2 t. vanilla
1/3 cup plain yogurt or buttermilk
Grate fresh zucchini - do not peel. If you don't cut off the stem end you can use it like a little handle if you are grating by hand. You will need about 1 1/2 cups grated zucchini, lightly packed.
(You could substitute grated carrot for the zucchini.)
Add wet ingredients to dry and mix - don't overdo - mix just long enough so the dry ingredients are fully incorporated. Then stir in zucchini.
Put in a lightly greased pan and bake about 45 minutes for a 9x5 loaf pan. Baking time will depend on the size and shape of the pan you use. (See comments above re: doneness and baking time.)
Optional - add 1 cup raisins or walnuts or a combination. I used 1/2 lightly toasted black walnuts because that is what we have around our house. In my opinion black walnuts are a great complement to zucchini bread. And I used 1/2 cup golden raisins. I think sunflower seeds might work well in this bread.
Credit: Cook out of the Box Blog - Tried and True: Zucchini Bread
Ratatouille (8 servings)
Serve hot or at room temperature. Use as a side dish or serve over pasta or polenta with grated parmesan or asiago or similar cheese for a main course.
For best flavor use fresh garden vegetables. Make a double or triple batch – this freezes beautifully. Saute 2 cups of chopped onion and 4 cloves of minced FRESH garlic in 1/4 cup olive oil about 5 minutes over medium heat. Then add about 3 cups EACH of eggplant, zucchini squash and bell peppers and 4 cups fresh tomatoes – cut into approximately 1/2 inch cubes or pieces. Season with 1 1/2 t. salt, fresh ground pepper and about 1/2 c. chopped fresh herbs ( a combination of basil, thyme, oregano, parsley and rosemary is nice if you have these. Often I use just fresh basil and parsley.) Simmer covered until all vegetables are tender, about one hour. Stir occasionally while simmering. Even better the next day. A few Mediterranean olives on the side would be a great idea, too.
Credit: Cook out of the Box - Tried and True: Ratatouille