My Recipe Box

Southwestern Squash Sauté


Serves four to six as a side dish.

Part salsa, part side dish. This bright-­tasting sauté of zucchini, corn, and peppers is a good partner to grilled fish, chicken, or steak. With the addition of some cheese and a sliver of ripe avocado, you get a wonderful filling for quesadillas and soft tacos. I often vary the heat, from mild to spicy, by adding a little chile paste.

  • 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, diced
  • 3 small or 2 medium zucchini or summer squash (about 1 lb.), cut in medium (1/3-inch) dice
  • 1 large ear fresh corn, kernels cut from the cob
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large or 2 small fresh hot chiles (such as serrano or jalapeño), seeded and minced, or 1 mild green chile (such as poblano or Anaheim), roasted, peeled, seeded, and diced
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. chili powder (optional)
  • 1 to 2 Tbs. roughly chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 lime

Set a large skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add 2 Tbs. of the oil and let it heat. Add the onion, season with a little salt, and sauté until translucent, about 2 min. Add the diced red pepper and a little more salt and sauté for another 1 to 2 min. Transfer the pepper and onion to a bowl or plate. Turn the heat to high, add 1 more Tbs. oil and the squash. Season with salt and sauté for 3 or 4 min., stirring only occasionally, so that it begins to brown lightly and the flesh turns slightly translucent and is pleasantly tender (don’t overcook; it should still be toothy, not mushy). Put the peppers and onions back in the pan, add the corn, garlic, and chiles, season again with salt, and sauté a few minutes more. Season with a few grinds of pepper, the cumin, and the chili powder (if using). Toss in the cilantro, squeeze the lime over all, toss, and serve.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on six servings, Calories (kcal): 110, Fat (kcal): 7, Fat Calories (g): 60, Saturated Fat (g): 1, Protein (g): 2, Monounsaturated Fat (g): 5, Carbohydrates (mg): 10, Polyunsaturated Fat (mg): 1, Sodium (g): 150, Cholesterol (g): 0, Fiber (g): 2,

Photo: Scott Phillips

Excellent use of summer squash and corn! Lots of prep but worth the effort. I cut back on the salt suggested and it turned out fine.

Great use for summer farmer's market vegetables-and healthy to boot. Next time I will use only one jalapeno or cut out the chili powder, and not salt as often as the recipe calls for.

This dish is an absolute celebration of summer vegetables! For extra flavor and kick, add 1\2 teaspoon Bittersweet Smoked Spanish along with the chili powder. Try it as a main dish served with naan, pita, or tortillas.

One of my favorite summer side dishes. Delicious!

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