Thursday, March 15, 2012

Yellow Squash Noodles with Butter, Peas, and Cream

Look for fairly straight, long summer squash, ones you can easily run a vegetable peeler over to create these “noodles.” Makes 4 servings

What you'll need:

  • 2 pounds yellow squash
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup shelled fresh peas or thawed frozen peas 
  • 1⁄4 cup heavy cream
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano, finely grated (about 1⁄2 cup)

Here's what to do:

  1. Use a vegetable peeler to make long, thin noodles from the squash, running it along their flat surfaces, turning the squash after each strip. Don’t shave them into their seedy cores which you should discard.
  2. Melt the butter in the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onion, reduce the heat to low, and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic, raise the heat to medium, and cook for 20 seconds.
  3. Add the prepared squash noodles and cook until tender, tossing often, about 3 minutes. (Kitchen tongs work best.) Add the peas; cook for 1 minute.
  4. Stir in the cream and bring to a boil. Stir in the pepper, salt, and red pepper fl  akes; then remove from the heat and stir in the cheese until melted.

Variations: For a stronger taste, substitute Asiago for the Parmigiano-Reggiano. Substitute 1⁄2 cup pine nuts for the peas. For an even creamier dish, omit the Parmigiano-Reggiano and stir in 2 ounces soft goat cheese such as Montrachet into the sauce until melted.

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