Every once in a while, I find a new way to prepare a vegetable I’ve been cooking and eating for years.   I’ve always sliced or chopped summer squash and considered it a chunky vegetable, or grated it to put in salads.  Last year I was shown how to make spaghetti out of it.  This year, I am using a vegetable peeler to make wide, thin ribbons — sort of like lasagne noodles.  When cooked, these squash ribbons quickly absorb other flavors while retaining a slightly crunchy texture.

Trim the ends off 4 summer squash.  Slice zucchini types in half lengthwise; pattypan types in half from top to bottom.

Place the cut side of the squash down and use a vegetable peeler to slice each one from top to bottom.  The slices should be as thick as the peeler will let you make — you don’t want them paper-thin like shredded carrots.  Right-angle peelers like the one below work best, but either way be careful and use two hands.

Squash Ribbons

If you want the ribbons narrower, you can slice them in half lengthwise after cutting.

Prepared this way, you can substitute the squash for noodles completely, or go 50/50 — for example, in lasagna.

Alternately, you can make your favorite zucchini recipe but cut the squash this way instead of the way you used to.  It will be just as good, just different.

Or, don’t cook the ribbons at all.  Marinate them with salt, and lemon juice or vinegar, and spices of your choice and use them as the basis for a salad, or as a substitute for (or addition to) sliced turkey or other sandwich filling.