Zucchini Ribbons & Weekend Staycation!

This past weekend was the best! We got to play house in a fabulous home in Highland Park...
Built in the 1920's, it's a Spanish Mission style home that makes you feel like your nestled into a Southern California neighborhood somewhere.

Our friend Alfonso noted, "This house is gorgeous! You don't feel like you're in Dallas..."

The mornings and afternoons were spent sitting in the sunshine next to the pool, sipping coffee, reading books, playing with the three dogs and listening to opera. The nights were filled with friends, dinner, more music (starting with jazz then onto the electronic mixes!) and movies, all with the doors open and the sounds of the fountains splashing into the pool creating a heaven-on-earth oasis!

On Saturday we had a dinner party with 7 friends, including a birthday girl!

It was so nice for me to host a dinner party in a large space without feeling too cramped with everyone being in the kitchen. Our sweet but small one bedroom apartment tends to make me feel this way with four or more people in it. And not to mention the luxury of the dining table! Whoa! Dan and I currently have barstools and a kitchen island, lol. But it won't be this way forever! (I will always find the bright side!)

Soooo, without further todo, our lovely friend Sarah requested the recipe for one of the side dishes- Zucchini Ribbons! This is simple and sensational. Give it a shot!

Zucchini and Squash Ribbons with Red Onion, Red Pepper and Parmesan

Serves 4

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 large organic zucchini
2 large organic squash
1 red onion
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon crushed red pepper
dash of salt & fresh cracked black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh grated parmesan

Rinse squash and zucchini. With a vegetable peeler, peel skin and outer layers of the vegetables lengthwise, creating long ribbons, into a medium bowl. When you get to the seeded part in the center, stop peeling and set aside to use another day. Repeat with all squash and zucchini.

Cut red onion into thin strips.

In a large saute pan on medium-high heat, add olive oil. Add ribbons and onion to pan and stir all together. Cover pan and saute 3 minutes. Stir again, add water to pan and let steam and cook for 5 minutes or until onions and are soft.

Remove from heat. Drain off any excess water. Add dash of sea salt & fresh cracked black pepper, red pepper and sprinkle evenly with parmesan. Cover for two minutes to melt cheese. And serve!

This side has been great with fish, beef and chicken! It's super verstile since it has the light fresh ribbons, creaminess in the parmesan and little bite with the pepper.

Cooks Notes: If you don't have crushed red pepper, substitute with cayenne pepper to get a little heat. If your store only has squash OR zucchini, no problem! Just double up on the one they have! Throwing out the middle, seeded part of the vegetable is a waste! I just store them in a Ziploc or air tight container, chop them up and saute with olive oil for a dinner side dish a different night that week!

This quote is painted on the wall in the kids' media room/laundry room that looks out to the pool and the other side of the house. Does this mom get it, or what! Love her!