A Summer Squash Celebration

By Amanda Paa – Updated May 17, 2020

Over the last month, this whole writing a book thing has became real in many ways. I still feel a little weird when people ask me what the book is about and I respond bashfully with “Squash, both summer and winter varieties. You know, endless ways of turning them into delicious eats and how to figure out what is what at the market.” Some look at me like I’m a little crazy, some talk about how they’re totally not a squash person, yet I still feel support and encouragement from them all.

Humbly I admit that seeing Smitten with Squash in an actual store was something I had dreamed of since I began testing & writing. Knowing that it was supposed to be shipped out last week, I called a local shop to see if they had received it. Not revealing that I was the author when I asked, the gal said “Why yes we do. In fact I just bought one yesterday. It’s wonderful. Do you want me to set one aside for you?”

Smitten with Squash {written by Amanda Paa}

My heart skipped a few beats. There’s a bit of doubting that goes along with anything you do like this….. Will people like the book? Will the recipes turn out when they make them at home? Is my writing good enough? What if nobody buys it? So when I heard the praise from the woman on the other end of the phone, I felt some of the anxiety leave.

And to top that off, six fabulous ladies whom I am so thankful to have met through this beautiful online world are helping me celebrate by sharing a summer recipe from Smitten with Squash. (I’ll share some of the winter recipes a little later this fall.) One of these gals will be posting each day this week, so stayed tuned as I’ll add the links to their posts throughout the week.

PLUS, each of us is giving away a copy of Smitten with Squash (enter below) so you can win one for your own kitchen! Be sure to hop around and see all these beautiful blogs and find some new recipes for your bumper crop of summer squash and zucchini. Oh, and if you’re on Twitter or Instagram, we’re using the #SquashLove to spread the word.

Monday: Brenda from a Farmgirls Dabbles – Spicy Summer Squash Refrigerator Pickles
Tuesday: Stephanie from Fresh Tart Chimichurri Chicken and Veggie Kabobs
Wednesday: Robin from Robin WritesGaram Masala Dusted Pattypans & Crispy Chickpeas with Tahini Sauce
Thursday: Lindsey from Dolly & OatmealBanana Oat Streusel Summer Squash Muffins
Friday: Laurie from Relishing ItCauliflower Zucchini Summer Gratin
Saturday: Winnie from Healthy Green KitchenCherry Tomato & Summer Squash Cobbler with Rosemary Biscuits

Zucchini Noodles for One with Fresh Herbs & Tahini

This recipe is a foundation for so many possibilities of zucchini noodle goodness. There are two recipes for this type of dish in the book, and I’m sharing this extra one today to tell you that you don’t need a fancy spiralizer to make squash noodles. A $10 julienne peeler and watching this quick video is all you need to create strands and tangles of vegetable delight.

1 medium zucchini or summer squash, julienned into noodles using method above
handful of minced fresh parsley and mint
big squeeze of fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt & a few cracks of black pepper
1 tablespoon tahini

In a bowl combine zucchini noodles, herbs, lemon juice, olive oil and salt/pepper. Toss to coat and taste. Add more salt or lemon juice as needed. Mound onto a plate and drizzle with tahini.

Did you make this?

tag @heartbeetkitchen on instagram and hashtag it #heartbeetkitchen

July 21, 2014


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  1. Eva

    Thank you for your quick responde, believe me I will because a love zucchini

  2. Eva

    This noodles just good for my diet, but I am from nicaragua, what is tahini, or another name or use something else just in case cant get tahini

    • Amanda Paa

      Hello! Tahini is a seed “butter” made from ground sesame seed, just like peanut butter or almond butter. You could use either one of those in place of the tahini. Enjoy!

  3. Kathryn

    Congratulations! It must be absolutely fantastic to see your actual book in the shops; how brilliant!

  4. Alanna

    Congratulations Amanda! The book looks gorgeous and so do all these recipes. (Yum tahini and herbed zucchini noodles…) Can’t wait to get my squash-loving hands on a copy. <3

    • Amanda Paa

      Thank you so much Alanna! I’ll be sending your copy out next week :) Ps – i really want some of that cherry chocolate skillet you made right about NOW!

  5. Kate

    I’m SO looking forward to seeing everyone’s creations. This book is making me far more excited about squash than I’ve ever been, and looking forward to snatching up a few baskets at the market and getting my groove on. :-)

  6. Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough

    Um, ALL of those recipes sound amazing — this is going to be the best week ever! :) Congrats again on your book, lady — you deserve every bit of praise for your hard work and delicious recipes.

    • Amanda Paa

      Thank you so much Stephanie! Please know that you are an inspiration to me :) We need to plan a coffee or dinner date soon!