It’s right about now that farmers will start to have summer squash available by the truckload – literally.  This mild, tender vegetable is incredibly versatile – from layering in lasagna, to the prolific zucchini bread, it adapts to savory or sweet perfectly.

Also, they’re gorgeous:
IMAG2394And nutritious!  A cup of cooked zucchini (with skin on!) is loaded with 40% of your daily vitamin A and 3g of fiber, all in less than 30 calories.

The only problem is that frankly, zucchini doesn’t taste like much on its own.  Sliced raw, they can make good dippers for hummus or dressing, but they’re not a “pop ’em” kind of veggie the way snap peas or cherry tomatoes are.  So I gave them a little flavor boost in this recipe, with help from another market pick: the garlic scape.

IMAG2396 IMAG2411The scape is the part that grows out of the bulb of garlic you’re probably familiar with (that’s actually underground), and it tastes like garlic while looking like a scallion.  You can use them as you do garlic for a bright, garlicky flavor!


  • 3 medium zucchini (I used 3 different varieties; the stripey ones are the sweetest!)
  • 3 garlic scapes
  • 2 Tbsp olive or canola oil
  • 8-10 basil leaves, ribboned
  • juice of half a lemon

Chop zucchini into cubes as shown.  Dice garlic scapes.  Head oil over medium-high and add scapes.  Sautee lightly with pepper, then add the zucchini.  Cook, stirring frequently, until they soften but don’t become mushy (about 10-15 minutes).  At the end, add lemon juice and fold in basil.  Enjoy on crusty bread; can sprinkle on parmesan or feta cheese too! Hint: this would be a great bring-along for a potluck or BBQ!

IMAG2406 chop off endsIMAG2407 slice lengthwiseIMAG2408 make long vertical cuts about 1/4″ apartIMAG2409 dice perpendicular to the long cuts to cubeIMAG2410voila IMAG2412 IMAG2413 IMAG2415I also added a few tablespoons of pine nuts!

Bonus recipe: just add cooked quinoa for a next-day meal that’s delicious warm or cool!