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Summer Squash with Southwestern Flavors

Summer Squash with Southwestern Flavors
The squashes that grow in the summer garden are thin skinned and tender, cook quickly and are endlessly versatile. Try them sautéed, stir-fried, boiled, steamed or broiled. Any summer squashes, or a combination, may be used in this recipe: green or golden zucchini, yellow straightneck or crookneck, bright yellow Sunburst, lime green pattypan or striped cocozelle. Look for small to medium-size squashes, as large ones can be bitter and watery.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4 Serves 4.


  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 small to medium summer squashes, trimmed
      and cut into slices about 1/8 inch thick
  • 2 medium to large ripe tomatoes, peeled or
      unpeeled, chopped
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1⁄4 fresh green chili, minced, or to taste
  • 1⁄4 tsp. ground cumin, or to taste
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Juice of 1⁄2 lime (1 Tbs.), or to taste
  • 1 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro


In a fry pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the squashes and sauté until they just color lightly, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, onion, garlic, chili, cumin and sea salt. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook until the squashes are tender-crisp, a few minutes more.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the lime juice. Taste and adjust the seasonings with chili, cumin, salt or lime juice. Transfer to a serving dish, sprinkle with the cilantro and serve immediately.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Collection Series, Vegetable, by Marlena Spieler (Simon & Schuster, 2002).