To me one of the greatest delights of summer cooking is the grill – there is something so ancient about gathering around the fire. Plus, it is so chill. Firing up vegetables in the evening, and putting what remains into sandwiches the next day, keeps things delicious without excess time, heat or fuss.
Because who needs a hot fuss in summer? We’ve got bikes to ride, seas to sail, waves to surf, sunflowers to pick, and castles to build.
In this final sandwich of the series, I grilled up two kinds of squash and talk about meaty – with a bacon-y, salty crunch, this is sink-your-teeth-in sweetness.
You can use any kind of squash. Cousa is growing abundantly here, and it is perfect for its fleshy sweetness. It is less watery than zucchini, so it holds up as it grills up.
You don’t have to wait for the grilled squash to cool. You can grill it up and sandwich it hot, which would give a terrific hot/not-hot play on the tongue.
Given the variety of textures and tastes this is a gorgeous Yin/Yang of a sandwich already, a balance of opposites, that dynamically delivers whole. Whole food, whole-hearted, holy nourishment all summer long.
Sandwich #3: Grilled Squash with Crunchy Minty Mayo
Makes 2-4 sandwiches
butternut squash (1 slice per sandwich)
summer squash (2 slices per sandwich)
sea or pink salt, fresh cracked pepper
2 T your favorite mayo
handful of pepitas, roasted and salted
small handful of coconut flakes
small knob of ghee (or coconut oil)
splash of tamari
a handful of fresh mint leaves
red leaf lettuce
your favorite hearty bread
Grill the Squash
Clean the squash and cut both in 1/2″ slices lengthwise. Lay out on a large plate, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Fire up the grill. Lay the slices diagonally on the grill grate. Grill until an inserted fork indicates a firm tenderness. Remove from heat.
You can also roast the squash in your oven, or pan fry in an iron skillet to get a similar golden caramel warmth.
Make a Minty Mayo
While the squash is grilling, toast the pepitas and coconut flakes in a small pan over a medium high heat. After a minute or two, add the ghee, or coconut oil. Swirl the pan to stir. Give it another couple of minutes, alternately toasting and swirling until the flakes start to lightly brown. Add a good splash of tamari, swirl again, and pour the whole thing into a small bowl with the mayo. Tear the mint leaves and toss in.
Layer the Sandwich
Gently spread the minty mayo on one slice of bread. Lightly spread your favorite mayo on the other slice, or put the minty mayo on both slices. It’s your choice as to how much bacon-y crunch you want.
Place one grilled slice of butternut squash on the minty mayo, lay the zucchini over that, and the lettuce on top. Close up the sandwich, gently press and enjoy!
I served it with a side of sliced, home-grown cherry tomatoes tossed in fresh lime juice with a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of sea salt and a few torn leaves of basil. The flavor contrast of sour-y fresh tomatoes with the sink-your-teeth-in comfort of the squash is divine! It’s truly a taste of heaven.
Which by the way, is sort of what life has been tasting like lately – because, after saying I am writing a book for years, I am actually now writing a book! A fantastic publisher contacted me a week ago to write a book called Ayurvedic Cooking for Beginners. It comes out late November, so it is a tight deadline and I’ve got some work to do!
How about you? How is your summer going?
I hope you are savoring every juicy flavor life has to offer, and I wish you love always.