amy chaplin

celebrating the art of eating well

Sautéed sweet corn, summer squash and basil over heirloom tomatoes

POSTED ON August 15, 2009

summer on a plate

Sweet corn, basil and tomatoes are some of my favorite summer ingredients and on a recent trip home from the market I was trying to decide how I could combine them all for dinner. Actually, I was still figuring it out as I sautéed some summer squash, that had to be used and shucked the corn I had just carried home….there were many possibilities: tossed with pasta, in a salad or as a tart filling?

But, what I really wanted was to enjoy the combination of these summer flavors and a quick, easy meal. So, I added sautéed sweet corn and garlic to the squash, stirred in some basil leaves and piled it on slices of heirloom tomatoes that I had splashed with balsamic vinegar. It was delicious!

I think this would be a great starter to serve at a dinner party, as it is plated quickly and looks impressive without fuss.


globe squash

globe squash

sautéing squash

sautéd sweet corn, squash and basil

The corn squash mix can be made ahead and eaten with anything. I was tempted to marinate some butter beans and add them or eat it in a pita sandwich with feta and arugula, the next day I used it as a topping for my staple quinoa.

This is a great way to highlight the few precious tomatoes we’ll eat here in New York this season.(In case you haven’t heard about the tragedy of late blight and how it spread you can read about it here and here.)

As I savored the heirloom with this topping, I thought, summer with her intoxicating flavors and fragrance had arrived on my plate. That unique anise scent of fresh basil, the juicy sweetness of corn that is like sunshine, if you could eat it, and the earthy tang of a just picked tomato is a heady, elevating combination that I look forward to every year.

Sautéed sweet corn, summer squash & basil
over heirloom tomatoes

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 medium size globe squash or zucchini, sliced
sea salt and back pepper to taste
5 medium cloves garlic, sliced
2 ears sweet corn, shucked
8 to 10 basil leaves, torn
2 large heirloom tomatoes, sliced
balsamic vinegar

Heat 2 table spoons of olive oil in a heavy skillet over high heat.
Place summer squash in pan in one layer, season with salt and pepper, lower heat to medium and sauté until golden. Turn squash over and continue sautéing, it will take a few minutes to get a nice golden brown color on each side. Repeat with remaining squash. Place in a bowl and set aside.
Add remaining olive oil to the skillet and add garlic, lower heat and stir until it starts to brown, add corn kernels, season and cook for 2 minutes. Place in the bowl with squash and add basil. Toss and taste for salt.
Slice heirloom tomatoes, place 1 one slice on each plate and drizzle with balsamic vinegar, top with another slice, drizzle again then place about 3/4 cup corn squash mixture over and serve.
Serves about 4.

TAGGED UNDER: basil, summer

never miss a recipe!


Leave a Reply