Thursday, July 14, 2011
When I think back to summer nights when I was a kid a few specific things stand out in my memory. I remember being so excited when the lightening bugs finally made an appearance. I loved catching them and putting them in a mayonnaise jar with holes punched in the lid. I guess Mom or Dad would let them out, because the next morning the jar was always empty. Still it was a fun thing to do at night. Since we lived in a neighborhood overrun with kids there was always someone to play with. The neighborhood rule was you went in to eat supper then came back out to play until 9 or 9:30. There was something magical about playing at night and there were plenty of kids to play kick the can, freeze tag, or capture the flag.
Supper would have be a dreaded interruption in play time if it were not for our traditional summer stand bys. Dad would cook out a steak occasionally, a burger more often, but most of our summer nighttime meals would have made the most ardent vegetarian deliriously happy. Most night we ate field peas, butter beans or green beans, squash, okra, corn, tomatoes, coleslaw, salad, cornbread and iced tea. We never had all the above, but a combination of some were our standard summer fare. The upside of all of this was twofold. My beloved sister and I could scarf down our food in a hurry and because we had to wash, dry and put away the dishes before going back out to play, veggie night dishes were very easy to wash. There was no sticky or greasy mess to have to contend with. Plus this was before all the high grade cleaners. As I remember we had our choice of Lux, Ivory or Palmolive and not one of them had grease cutters.
I try to continue the tradition of meatless fresh veggie nights during the summer. Not because there is anyone here heading out to play in the evening but just because nothing is better than fresh cooked summer vegetables. Tonight we had pink eyed peas, corn on the cob ( Yes it was Silver Queen!) sliced tomatoes, cucumbers and squash patties. I just did not feel like having steamed squash and searched the internet for something a little more interesting to do with the beautiful squash I got at Andy's. I found this recipe on multiple sites and thought I would give it a go. What a great idea it turned out to be. The patties were moist and flavorful, but also had a very light cornbread flavor. If I had fried them rather than cooked them on a griddle I think they would have been delicious squash fritters, which I will never try because it would be a bigger mess and summertime is not the time to have a messy kitchen. After all who wants to stay in the kitchen and clean when you can grab a glass of iced tea and sit back and listen to the crickets!
2 cups grated yellow squash
1 small onion chopped ( Means grated in my world, especially if the grater is out)
1/4 cup self rising flour ( I cut it to 2 tablespoons because I did not want a thick batter)
1/3 cup self rising cornmeal ( Cornmeal mix)
1 egg, beaten
salt and pepper to taste. ( Here that means a lot of pepper and a little salt)
Grate the squash into a mixing bowl, add the onion ( if you chop it you need to chop it very fine) sprinkle the flour and cornmeal over the veggies and stir lightly. Add the egg, salt and pepper and stir to incorporate everything. The mix should look like thin cornbread with shredded stuff in it. Heat a griddle like you would for pancakes. ( I use the fling water droplets on it and when they bounce it's ready method) Remove the griddle from the heat and spray with Pam ( I found out the need to removing a very hot griddle from the heat. Maybe, just possibly the Pam flames up if things are too hot...Maybe) Using a spoon kinda flop ( technical term meaning more than a spoonful and requiring a little muscle to get it off the spatula) some of the squash batter on the griddle, wait till the bottom edge is light brown and flip those puppies over so they can cook on the other side. Repeat until you are out of batter and serve immediately.
The red peppers in the photo have nothing to do with the squash patties. I had just picked them from our little veggie patch and I thought they were pretty. Hmmmmmm, I wouder how a little chopped pepper would taste in them?
If you like squash you will really like this and even if you don't like it there is a good chance you will find these tasty.