I brought these little cuties home from the farmers market last weekend. If you’ve been following, you might have noticed that I have a little obsesssion for all things mini, so I just couldn’t resist the these teeny tiny patty pan squashes.
I’m going to chalk it up to the heat, but I’ve been spacey lately. When I was ready to start cooking, I stood in my kitchen and realized the only thing I had intentionally planned to go with my sautée of mini squashes were some chives. I mean, there’s something to be said for turning vegetarian “sides” into full meals… but chives are maybe not the most filling way to achieve that.
At first glance, my near-empty fridge offered no help. Then this gorgeous recipe of Aida’s popped into my mind, and I realized I had enough to make something similar. I ended up changing a few things according to what I had (or rather, didn’t have) on hand, and also took a slightly more summery spin. (Her story with the recipe was about a blustery day in San Francisco — and it sure is/was/will-seemingly-always-be 105 degrees here).
- ¾ cup uncooked whole grain orzo (or sub in a gluten free grain)
- 1 cup basil leaves, torn
- ¼ cup pine nuts, toasted
- ¼ cup chopped chives
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- ¼ cup feta (optional)
- ¼ cup grated parmesan (optional)
- Sun-dried tomatoes (optional)
- Drizzle of balsamic (optional)
- 1-2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small red onion, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- About 2 cups sliced summer squash
- ½ cup corn (I used frozen, by all means use fresh if you have it)
- Generous splash white wine, to deglaze the pan (or big squeeze of lemon)
- Sea salt and fresh black pepper
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the orzo until al dente, referring to your package for exact cooking times. Drain, reserving ½ cup cooking water, and set aside.
- Make the squash sauté: Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the garlic and summer squash and a splash of white wine. Continue cooking until the wine reduces and the squash softens. Stir in the corn. Taste and adjust seasonings.
- Raise the heat to medium-high and add the reserved pasta water. Stir in the orzo and mix until the vegetables and pasta are well combined. Add the basil, pine nuts, chives, and red pepper flakes. Taste and adjust seasonings, topping with the feta, parmesan, sun-dried tomatoes, and/or balsamic, if desired.