We still have leftover summer squash, and it remains fresh! But it doesn’t stay that way forever, and we knew we needed to come up with a new recipe, stat. So, we were delighted to stumble upon a recipe for vegan, gluten-free penne noodles, dressed up with summer squash, garlic, fresh basil, and spinach. We modified the recipe a bit and came up with a delicious, light but filling meal. We think you’ll love it!
8 ounces gluten-free noodles (we used penne, but any kind will do)
2 tablespoons vegan butter or margarine, such as Earth Balance
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow (summer) squash, chopped
sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
7-8 garlic cloves, chopped
8 large, fresh basil leaves, plus a couple more for chopping
large handful of spinach (or kale, or chard, or arugula)
1 small lemon
red pepper flakes (optional)
Boil the pasta noodles in a large pot until they are tender. Drain them in a colander and set aside.
Place the pot back on the stove and pour in the chopped summer squash. Add the vegan butter or margarine, a pinch of salt and pepper, and the olive oil and sauté the squash until it is tender. This should take about 8-10 minutes. Please don’t burn the squash or let it get too runny!
Add the chopped garlic, spinach, and basil to the mixture and continue to sauté the pot’s contents for another 2-3 minutes. Add the pasta and continue stirring for a couple more minutes until everything is thoroughly combined.
Remove the pot from the stovetop and pour the contents into a large bowl. Give the contents a couple more tosses and squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the top. If desired, you can add a couple of pinches of red pepper flakes. We like our dishes spicy, and hope you do, as well. If not, just forgo this step entirely.
This zesty pasta dish serves about four guests, depending on everyone’s hunger level. On hot evenings, it might be all you need for dinner. On cooler evenings — or if everyone is super ravenous — you might try combining it with a hearty, protein-based choice, such as vegan, gluten-free sausage. Feel free to experiment!
Leftovers keep well in the refrigerator for 2-3 days, but we wouldn’t try to freeze them. You’ll be delighted by this meal’s subtle but powerful combination of flavors! And doesn’t it feel good to finally get rid of some of that summer squash?
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