Summer Squash

Chicken Monterey

This recipe highlights California fruits and vegetables using summer squash, oregano and orange. It's light, packed with vegetables and refreshing. It's pretty enough for a special meal and great to prep in the cool of the morning then finish in the crockpot. 

  • 5 Tbls olive oil
  • 1 frying chicken, cut into pieces
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 carrots, chopped (I like the red & yellow carrots)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup or more chicken broth
  • Zest of one orange
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 cup canned tomatoes, crushed 
  • 1 lg. sprig fresh oregano or rosemary, minced 
  • 1 red pepper, cored and stemmed, cut julienne (matchsticks)
  • 1 red pepper, cored and stemmed, cut julienne (matchsticks)
  • 1 small zucchini, cut julienne (matchsticks)
  • 1 small yellow zucchini, cut julienne (matchsticks)
  •     For the garnish:
  • 1/3 cup parsley, minced and mixed with 1 Tbls. orange zest
  • Salt and pepper (white pepper is nice here)

On medium-high, heat 3 Tbls. of the oil in a large skillet. Pat the chicken pieces dry, lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper and sauté until a light golden on both sides. Remove to a plate and set aside. 

Turn the heat down to low and add the onions, carrots and garlic to the oil. Cover and sweat, cooking until tender, about 5 minutes. Uncover the skillet and add the stock, orange juice, tomatoes, and oregano. Simmer uncovered, for 15 minutes. 

Return chicken pieces to the pan and simmer for 15 minutes. Turn and baste the chicken and simmer for an additional 10 minutes or until the chicken is done.

  • At this point, the chicken can be cooled and then chilled to use another day. Gently reheat the chicken in the sauce and proceed. 
  • To cook in a crockpot, instead of simmering on the stove, add the pieces, broth, juice, etc. to the crockpot and proceed following your crockpot recommendations for chicken.

To serve:

In a clean skillet, over medium heat, add remaining 2 Tbls. olive oil and sauté the red peppers for 5 minutes. Raise the heat and add the zucchini. Sauté until tender but firm, about 3 to 5 minutes. Place the chicken in a deep platter or on individual plates and cover with the sauce-vegetable mixture.

Top each piece with a mound of the pepper-zucchini mixture and garnish with a sprinkle of the parsley-orange zest mixture.

Adapted years ago from The Silver Palate Cookbook



Salted Summer Squash Salad with Olive Oil & Hazelnuts

Salted Summer Squash Salad with Olive Oil & Hazelnuts

  • 1 small summer squash per person (zucchini, crookneck or patty pan)
  • sea salt
  • EVOO
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • 2 Tbls. toasted, skinned and chopped *hazelnuts per person

Remove the ends and coarsely grate or julienne the squash. Place in a bowl and toss liberally with salt. Allow to sit for 20 minutes. 

Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and sauté the nuts just until lightly colored and set aside. After the 20 minutes, rinse the zucchini really well. Taste it to make sure it is not salty, if it is, rinse again. 

The squash absorbs quite a bit of water. Take handfuls and squeeze out as much liquid as possible and place in a dry bowl. Or, place the squash in a clean, dry tea towel and twist the towel squeezing out the water.

Drain the olive oil used to sauté the nuts over the squash and toss adding more olive oil and lemon juice to taste. Sprinkle with nuts and serve.

*Sliced or slivered almonds are also nice.