Monday, May 14, 2012
Herb crusted squash
By Joyce Lavene
Oh the joy of herbs! What would our foods be like without them? Imagine no garlic, no rosemary. What about onion and basil? We could eat but food would be much blander.
This week I have a wonderful recipe for herb crusted squash that makes the plain squash divine. My character, Peggy Lee, in the Peggy Lee Garden Mysteries, is a lover of herbs. She is also a vegetarian, like me, so the recipe is for squash instead of chicken.
Peggy Lee is a forensic botanist who lives in Charlotte, North Carolina where she also runs her garden store, The Potting Shed. Her husband was a Charlotte Police detective who was killed in the line of duty. Her job with the police is to help identify organic substances found on the clothes and the bodies of homicide victims. These can sometimes help the police find the criminals who have committed these crimes. Her specialty is botanical poisons.
Peggy is an avid gardener, also like me, who loves plants of all kinds. She can't stand to see a ficus that isn't getting enough light in an office. And she has a large summer garden - which takes us back to squash.
This recipe for squash is healthy and satisfying without pan frying. It's best with fresh garden squash and herbs but is very good with the store-bought variety too. Just in time for summer gardens!
Herb Crusted Squash
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
5 Tbsp. basil
5 Tbsp. parsley
1 Tbsp. rosemary
1 large yellow squash, slice horizontally
Mix breadcrumbs with herb blend in flat-bottomed bowl. Use brush to cover both sides of squash slices with olive oil then cover in breadcrumb herb mixture. Spray baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray then place squash slices on the pan. Cook on 425 degrees for about 10 minutes. Crust should be lightly brown and crispy.
The Peggy Lee Garden Mysteries
By Joyce and Jim Lavene