• Summer Squash Pasta with Brown Butter & Lemon


Summer Squash Pasta with Brown Butter & Lemon

This is a fresh and bright pasta that uses seasonal ingredients like summer squash. You can use any sort of zucchini, my favorite being gold bar squash. Please note: the smaller the better when it comes to these squash. When they get big (you know—like when they are the size of your leg), they hold too much liquid, and have a woody flavor. The smaller squash taste better and are easier cut and cook, making a much more flavorful dish.

Ways you could improvise with this dish:

This recipe is more of a roadmap than set in stone. Improvise with whatever is fresh and ready from your garden or the farmer’s market. For example:

  • Add a pinch of red pepper flakes.
  • Top with toasted pine nuts.
  • Top with fresh basil.
  • Swap Parmesan with goat cheese or feta.
  • Add roasted cherry tomatoes.

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A fresh and bright pasta dish that tastes like summer, made with seasonal summer squash/zucchini.


Summer Squash Pasta with Brown Butter & Lemon


  • 1 pound of dried pasta, I prefer mezze rigatoni or mezze penne
  • 4-5 gold bar squash, each about 8 inches long
  • 1 stick salted butter
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 1/4 cup mixed fresh thyme and parsley leaves
  • Parmesan Reggiano, grated


Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add your pasta, stir once and cook to al dente. Right before draining the pasta, dip a cup into the pot and reserve some pasta water.

Cut the coins, about 1/3 of an inch thick.

Bring the butter to melt, over medium heat in a large skillet, preferably 14 inches.

When butter browns, raise the heat, add the sliced gold bar squash, the shallots, herbs and brown the squash on each side. Get good color but don’t overcook and make your squash mushy, about 2-3 minutes on each side.

Add the pasta, 1/4 cup or so of the pasta water and briefly toss.

Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Place in a wide low bowl, sprinkle with fresh lemon juice to taste and plenty of parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.

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