Tired of summer squash? Too bad, time to eat more. Can’t say I’m tired of it, because I don’t have any in my garden (yet). But if I did, this salad would be a perfect way to plow through those ceaselessly proliferating plants. Or you could not pick them, let them get gigantic, then leave them on your patio table, hoping that they’ll turn into dried out ornamental gourds. I’ve def done that a few times.
This past weekend Joe and I went to Guadalupe River State Park. It was wonderful! I’m just mad it’s not 10 minutes away. But then I’m often mad when things are even 5 minutes away, unless I can bike. Biking makes distances seem shorter than driving the same. I’m nuts. But yeah, so the park was great. The water was warm and that was enough for us to really not do much else except float and flail around in it. It was a good thing we decided to forgo a hike, because we both got sunburned. I was trying to work on evening myself out for Samantha’s wedding by not wearing sunscreen on skin that hasn’t seen the sun in years (I’m super smart). I’m not even sure if my tan lines show in my dress. I should probably check that out before I try that stunt again. I’ve also recently noticed, since my arms and shoulders are so tan, that I have all these scars on my right shoulder where one of my cats happily digs his claws into it when I hold him. I give up. I’ll never be wonderfully beautiful.
I see no reason why you couldn’t add additional veggies in this little salad dude. Slivers of onions, bell peppers, herbs, whatevs. In fact I see every reason to do so, unless of course you really do need to make sure you eat all the summer squash your plants are spewing forth. Other than that, this is really straightforward. You certainly don’t need to use a mandoline to cut up the squash like I did – it’s easier, but fussy maybe. When you toast your sesame seeds, use a dry pan. My little cast iron pan had too much residual fat in it and the seeds all clumped together and made it hard to toss around and then sprinkle on the salad. Fatty seeds.
I’ve got this piquin chile plant in my back yard that is just full of these jerky peppers. They’re so cute and little but have nearly killed everyone I know (3, including me) who have tried them. I forgot to put them in the last jar of cucumber pickles I made, so I decided to use one in this salad. Yes, one. Really, I could have used two, but I was so scared! They’re terrible! Use whatever hot pepper you want, or cayenne if you don’t want to ruin your fingers and then your eyeballs when you try to take out your contacts later at night.
sesame summer squash salad
a recipe from Tasting Table
2 yellow summer squash
2 zucchini (or any combination or whatever summer squash you want)
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1/4 cup tahini
juice from 1/2 lemon
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
2 teaspoons rice vinegar
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1/2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated or finely minced
1 – 2 small hot chiles or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1. Heat a small frying pan over medium heat. Add the sesame seeds and toast for several minutes, until they are turning a golden brown. Place in a small bowl or plate.
2. Using a mandoline or a knife, cut your summer squashes lengthwise so that they are like 1/4 inch square. Or whatever, it’s more novel than anything.
3. Heat a saucepan full of well-salted water until boiling. Drop your squash strands in and cook for a minute or two. Drain in a colander, saving some water in the pan for later. Transfer colander to the fridge, or do an ice bath if you’re real perfect about your blanching. Meh.
4. Meanwhile, make the dressing. Whisk the remaining ingredients together, adding in a couple tablespoons worth of the liquid in the saucepan to thin it out a bit. Don’t worry if it seems too thick, there will be residual liquid on the squash that will thin it out after you dress it.
Toss the dressing with the squash, top with the toasted sesame seeds.