In my opinion, pattypan squash is far superior to its cousin yellow summer squash. It has firmer flesh, a lovely flavor, and the cutest shape around! It seems to be one of those vegetables that many people are unfamiliar with, so hopefully this recipe will open your eyes to the wonder of the pattypan.
Thyme Scented Pattypan Squash Ingredients (serves 4):
6 – 8 pattypan squash, sliced
4 – 6 cloves of garlic, sliced
5 springs of fresh thyme
½ bunch fresh parsley
dash of olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Directions (15 minutes):
Rinse and slice the squash. I like to make my slices between 1/8 – 1/4 inch thick, and then I cut them each in half to make nice bite-sized pieces.
Peel and slice the garlic. It’s nice to have larger pieces of garlic for this recipe, so no need to finely mince.
Sauté the squash and garlic in a dash of olive oil on medium high. Add the fresh thyme leaves while they are cooking (pull the leaves off the stems with your fingers). Stir regularly and continue sautéing for 7 – 10 minutes, or until squash is cooked through, but not mushy.
Toss the cooked squash with fresh parsley and add salt and pepper to taste. I find this dish needs a good amount of salt and pepper, so don’t be stingy (especially if you’re using good quality salt and pepper!).
We made this in my Summer Cooking Class last week, and it was a huge hit with the students. Most people had never worked with pattypan before, and left excited to add this dish to their summer repertoire. There is something I really love about introducing people to new veggies. It's easy to get stuck in a rut of only buying lettuce mix, tomatoes, avocados, carrots, and possibly some kale. But the world of vegetables is vast! And filled with so many wonderful and flavorful treats to discover.
I encourage you to tap into this spirit of exploration as you visit the farmers markets in the coming weeks. Get that wacky vegetable that you've always noticed, but never known how to cook. Ask the farmer what they recommend for preparation, google around in the blogosphere, or shoot me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I'll be happy to share my favorite recipes!