Monday, July 11, 2011

shaved summer squash salad

By Julie

Over a year ago, Joe brought me home a road bike that had been abandoned at his old work. I procrastinated on fixing it up until a couple weeks ago. What a shame. This is the first time I've had a bike since like 2003. THEY ARE SO FUN. I never want to drive anywhere anymore. We live in a really perfect spot for errand- and outing-biking and long distances, too. We live right near the confluence of the Platte River and Cherry Creek. There are trails along both of those waterways and you can go pretty far on them, as well as get downtown easily without having to traverse the whole way on city streets. We're planning an outing some upcoming weekend to bike up north to Broomfield where, unbeknownst to me until a few days ago, is an Abbott's Frozen Custard. Holy. Crap. It's originally from Rochester, NY, where I'm from, and it is summer to me. Plus, not only is the frozen custard itself mean summer, but when I was younger we'd always bike to the Abbott's on the Erie Canal. So we HAVE to bike to this one!

So, while I have indulgent super rich frozen custard looming over me, this salad recipe will be here to balance out my sugar load. It's a such simple salad. But don't let that stop you from making it. It really is worth making. It'll be wonderful for a first course or side dish on a super hot day. If you want, you could put on grilled steak, chicken, or fish to make it a one-dish meal.

I'm betting you'll be able to find lots of fresh summer squash and salad greens at the local farmers' market. I haven't had a chance to stop by the ones near me, unfortunately. There's one on Thursday nights that I can swing by on my way home from work, but I haven't worked it into the grocery routine yet. Plus, the past couple Thursdays I was too busy to make a stop. But that's okay, plain old Joe Schmo grocery store fare was still great.

shaved summer squash salad
adapted (not really) from Bon Appetit, serves 4-6

1 pound summer squash (about 4 small), varied kinds
1/3 cup almonds, toasted and chopped or crushed
2 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced or pressed
coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
arugula or chopped/ripped lettuce

1. With a vegetable peeler, peel the squash into thin strips into a large bowl. I had to toss them when they got too skinny that they just kind of crumpled. Salvage what you can.

2. To make the dressing, whisk the oil, lemon juice, and garlic. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

3. Pour the dressing over the squash and let it sit for a few minutes to soak in. Place on top of the salad greens of your choice (arugula would be really nice, but I couldn't resist a super sale on organic romaine). Season again with salt and pepper and top with the toasted almonds.

This was originally posted at my blog, the crankin' kitchen!

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