Summer Squash with Basil Cream Cheese

Smother anything in cream cheese, and it’s bound to be a crowd pleaser. This version with summer squash and basil is pure indulgence, where the sweetness of the squash and creaminess of the cheese melt on the tongue. Hide the fork so there is some left to serve.

This recipe and photo appeared first on KnowYourFarms.com and was adapted here.

Ingredients

  • 3 yellow squash, cubed
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced (optional)
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Steam the squash pieces for 5-10 minutes until cooked. Transfer to a glass serving dish and stir in garlic and salt.
  2. Sprinkle the cream cheese over the top, cover and let stand 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted. Alternate,  microwave, uncovered for about 1 minute. Stir until the cheese is smooth and blended into the squash. Let set for a minute or two before serving.

Strawberry Basil Iced Tea

In honor of National Iced Tea Day, here is a recipe using fresh strawberries in season. Combined with basil, the tea feels cooling and refreshing with a modest lift from the tea.

This recipe and photo first appeared on MarthaStewart.com and was modified to include seasonal ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 8 black or green tea bags
  • 1 pound strawberries, hulled and halved (quartered if large)
  • 1 cup water, plus more for steeping
  • 1/2 cup honey (or equivalent sweetener)
  • 1 cup fresh basil, plus more for serving
  • Ice, for serving

Directions

  1. STEP 1Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add tea bags, and let steep for 5 minutes.
  2. STEP 2Place strawberries in a bowl. Bring water and honey to a simmer in a small saucepan, stirring until honey melts. Remove from heat, add basil, and let steep for 10 minutes. Strain over strawberries; discard basil. Toss to coat. Let stand until cool, about 25 minutes. Combine strawberries (with syrup) and tea in a pitcher. Refrigerate until chilled. Serve over ice, and garnish with basil.

Pesto Meets Beets Two Ways

Roasted Beets with Pesto

Remove the leaves from 1 bunch of basil.  Puree the basil with 3 T. toasted walnuts, 1 minced clove of garlic and enough olive oil to make a thick paste.  Season with salt.  Add grated parmesan cheese to taste, if you like.

Slice beets into half-inch thick rounds or half-rounds.  Toss with 1 T. olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet in a single layer.  Sprinkle with salt.  When the beets are nicely browned on one side, remove them from the oven and toss with the pesto.  Return them to the cookie sheet and bake for another 15 minutes.


Roasted Beets without Pesto

Boil water and cook three large or four medium beets until tender.

Peel and mince 3 cloves of garlic.

Cool the cooked beets in water, then drain and peel them.  Cut into quarters and place in a food processor with the garlic, 1/2 C. toasted walnuts, 1/4 C. each lemon juice and olive oil, and 1 C. finely grated parmesan cheese.  Puree until smooth.  Season with salt and pepper.

Toss with cooked spaghetti or other pasta.

This recipe comes from www.eatliverun.com

Baked Zucchini with Basil and Parmesan

Baking zucchini into a casserole does two things: (1) uses up those zucchini starting to pile up in the kitchen and (2) transforms them into a low-carb comfort food that kids will love.

This recipe and photo first appeared on Kalynskitchen.com .

Ingredients

  • Ingredients:
  • 2 medium-sized zucchini, cut in slices or half-moon slices
  • 2 medium-sized yellow squash, cut in slices or half-moon slices
  • 2-4 T chopped fresh basil (or even less, depending on how much you like the flavor of basil)
  • 2 T thinly sliced green onion
  • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup + 1/2 cup low-fat white cheese (option: Pizza Cheese, which is a low-fat blend of Mozzarella, Provolone, Romano, and Parmesan)
  • 1/2 cup coarsely grated Parmesan (Use a little less if you only have the very finely grated Parmesan from a can)
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Spray an 8″ x 8″ baking dish with olive oil or non-stick spray. Wash the squash and cut in slices or half-moon slices. Wash basil, spin dry or dry with paper towels and finely chop. Slice green onions.
  2. Combine the sliced squash, chopped basil, sliced green onions, dried thyme, garlic powder, and both kinds of cheese and stir together until the veggies are coated with cheese and the herbs are well-distributed. Season with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Put the mixture in the baking dish and bake uncovered for about 25-30 minutes.
  3. When the zucchini is nearly cooked through, take the casserole dish out of the oven and sprinkle over the remaining 1/2 cup of grated cheese. Put the dish back in the oven and bake 10-15 minutes longer, or until the cheese is melted and nicely browned and zucchini is fully cooked. Serve hot.