Zucchini & Squash Spaghetti With Creamy Pesto

It’s been pretty hot outside lately, and cooking with the stove or oven can only make is worse at times. I was craving something light and refreshing, so I went with a summery vegetable “pasta” – mimicking the spaghetti with squash and zucchini ribbons instead. It was really good! I loved the veggie pasta, it was satisfying without having all the extra carbs. This is a gluten free meal, and can also be a raw meal if you don’t blanch the vegetables at all!

1 yellow squash, cut into small strips
1 zucchini, cut into small strips
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup fresh basil
Small handful of cress
1 garlic scape
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons cup pine nuts
2 tablespoons walnuts
2 tablespoons hemp nuts
1/3 cup water (or less as needed)
3 tablespoons ricotta cheese (optional)
Radishes, thinly sliced (optional)
Salt and pepper

Start by slicing the squash and zucchini into thin long strips so they almost resemble spaghetti. Set aside. Next make the pesto. Add the basil, cress, lemon, garlic scape, Parmesan cheese, nuts, olive oil and some pepper to a food processor. Blend well, adding bits of water as needed to get a smooth consistency. Set aside. In a pot of boiling water, blanch the zucchini and squash for about 1 minute until soft. Strain the water and add the squash/zucchini back to the pot along with the pesto. I like to add a few scoops at a time until I have the amount of sauce that I like. Plate the “pasta” and top with a small dollop of ricotta cheese and fresh radishes!


Summer Squash and Corn Soup

Apparently fall is on its way, and despite the past two days of 90 degree weather, I thought I would prepare myself for the upcoming season by making some soup. I had some summer squash and corn on hand and found a nice light recipe that sounded perfect for weaning my way into soup season. It could not have been easier to make and was absolutely delicious. I think next time I make it, I will have some nice bread on hand to dunk. I pretty much love any excuse to eat bread.

Ingredients: (adapted from Eating Well)
1 small shallot, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon balm
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
2 yellow squash, diced
1 fresh corn, sliced off the cob
14 oz chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
Pepper to taste
Crumbled feta cheese, for topping

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat and add the shallots. Let cook a minute or two then add the squash and fresh herbs. Cook for another 5 minutes until the squash softens a bit. Add the chicken broth and salt and let simmer for another 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and tip your soup in the pot so the liquid is deep enough to use your hand blender without having it splat everywhere. If you do not have a hand blender, you can simply pour the mixture into your blender and blend until smooth. Next, add the fresh corn and let simmer for 2-3 minutes. Lastly, add the lemon juice and pepper to taste. Pour into bowls and top with feta cheese and any leftover fresh herbs.

After making this for the first time, I think next time I might try adding half of the corn early and blending it in with the squash, then add the rest at the end per the above. This would make it even creamier which I think would be nice. Oh and the bread, lots of bread!