July is here and bringing the beginning of beautiful summer vegetables. This week in my CSA share I found gorgeous summer squash along with garlic scapes and leeks. Pulling them all together with a quick and easy pesto. The summer squash is sautéed right in the same pan as the garlic scapes, and picking up all that great flavor left behind. Click this link: to read more about garlic scapes, and this link to see the: Garlic Scape Pesto recipe separately.
Garlic scapes will be around in the month of July, so look for them at the farmers market. A great way to enjoy it later is to make a pesto and freeze it in an ice cube tray.
- 1 cup garlic scapes, cut in1” pieces, about 6 garlic scape stems
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Ground black pepper
- ½ lb. pasta, your choice of shape
- 1 lb. summer squash, cut in ½” medallions, about 4 cups
- 1 cup young leeks, 3-4 white, pale green and a little of the dark green
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 big juicy lemon, or 2 small ones
- ¼ cup roasted sliced almonds, plus more for garnish
- ¼ cup pecorino cheese, plus more for garnish
- Over medium heat saute the scapes with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Cook until they are slightly soft, about 3-5 minutes. Scrape into the bowl of your food processor and allow to cool.
- Place a pot of water on to boil. Then in the same sauté pan add a little more olive oil and sauté the leeks and garlic with a pinch of salt and pepper until just soft, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the squash and lower the heat a little. Cook until it all gets nice and golden brown, but not mushy. Turn off the heat and leave in the pan. Add the zest and juice of ½ a lemon and toss. Taste for additional seasoning.
- While the squash is cooking add the pasta to the boiling water with a good seasoning of salt. In the time it takes to cook the pasta the squash should be done and the pesto made.
- Add the almonds and pecorino to the food processor along with a ½ teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon of pepper. Process until finely ground. With the machine running add ½ cup of olive oil and about ¼ - ½ cup of pasta water. The water will help thin it out a little, just don’t let it get too watery. Add the remaining zest of the other half of the lemon and juice. Process to combine and taste for seasoning.
- Drain the pasta, reserving a little of the pasta water and place in a large serving bowl. Add enough pesto to coat the noodles and use a little hot pasta water the help distribute it well. Top with the sautéed squash and garnish with the reserved almonds and pecorino.
The pesto recipe will make about 1¾ cups of pesto. Take the leftover pesto and place in an ice cube tray and freeze for later.