All the Colors

Pasta with Fall Squash

I have a horrible confession to make: up until this summer I have never really done seasonal cooking.  Sure I’ll do more soups in the winter but I never focused on what produce is at it’s height for those soups.  Lately however I’m trying to be more attentive, and luckily my grocery store makes it easy with large “Grown Local” signs, so all I have to pay attention.  This dish is the result on that, and I’m happy to report that I have realized how versatile squash really is.  Once I was of the variety that purchased zucchini only, then I added butternut squash, but with the latest purchase I think I have now experimented with close to a half-dozen squash/gourd varieties so far this season.  I’m sure this is nothing compared to some (most?) people but I’m proud of how far I’ve come in being more aware of where the food I eat comes from.  This post is an example of one of my squash adventures.  As I mentioned earlier my grocery store does a great job of signing locally grown seasonal produce, and this time of year they have the squash bin row.  This row goes a good 20ft and features a good dozen types of squash/gourds ranging from the small pattypans to some huge blue hubbards.  It’s been interesting to watch them cycle thru as the pattypans are reduced to a smaller and smaller section while the butternut, acorn, and buttercup types are taking over.  For this recipe I used some late season pattypans but if done during the summer either long neck or bent-neck yellow squash would work.

All the Colors

Ingredients

1 tbsp EVOO

1/2 vidalia onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

3 pattypans (about 1 lb), sliced about 1/4 in thick

5 basil leaves, chopped

1 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper

pinch of salt

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

1 lb favorite pasta

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, until the onion starts to become transparent. Add the squash slices and seasonings. Cook about 7minutes, or until squash is tender.
  2. Meanwhile cook the pasta according to instructions on box, making sure to reserve 3/4 cup of the pasta water when the pasta is drained. Return the pasta to the pot.
  3. Pour the reserved pasta water over the squash along with the grated cheese in order to create a quick sauce. Combine with the noodles and serve hot!
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I also enjoy that this recipe is one of those quick and easy ones where dinner is on the table within about 30minutes of starting.  I’m looking forward to seeing what other varieties of winter produce start showing up at the market and what all I can do with them!