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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

I Heart Heidi Swanson

But first, a note to a random woman in my yoga class this morning:
Dear yoga lady,
Why do you feel the need to put on hairspray in the bathroom before class? You are aware that we are about to enter a 100 degree room where we will sweat all over ourselves for an hour? I'm sorry but your efforts are futile. And smelly. And confusing.

Oh hey did you notice that I really like this blog 101 Cookbooks? Probably, because it seems like every recipe I make is from, or inspired by Heidi's blog. So guess how excited I was when Heidi's new cookbook, Super Natural Every Day, hit the shelves a couple of months ago?


And also, kittens.

But in all seriousness - Heidi's recipes are creative, deceptively simple, unfailingly delicious, and (my favorite part) economical as heck. First of all, there's this delicious egg salad - who would have thought of making an egg salad with yogurt?? Not I said the fly. But this stuff is delicious - light and tangy, not weighed down with mayo like most egg salads, and open to endless combinations of deliciousness. Basically all you need is 4 hard-boiled eggs (she is very clear with her instructions NOT to over-cook the eggs), 2 tablespoons of plain yogurt, and a couple tablespoons of whatever fresh herbs you want. We used parsley and green onion because they were what we had... but anything would work really. Just toast some bread, smear some butter and garlic on the toast and spread the egg deliciousness over the top...the perfect breakfast for a pre-farmer's-market weekend morning.

Perfect with coffee...

Om nom nom

Moving on - when Ben and I received a pasta maker as a shower gift from my friend Emily and her mom, I knew exactly which recipe I wanted to test it on, especially since we had everything we needed to make this dish except summer squash, which was easily obtained from The Wedge. I also made my own addition to this recipe when I re-heated the leftovers, taking a couple slices of fresh farmer's market tomato, salting them and sauteeing them with about a teaspoon of butter, and then squishing the resulting cooked tomatoes over the re-heated pasta. AMAZING.

Sheets of pasta, ready for slicing...

How slick is that??


Squash and cheese, getting acquainted in a pan. Nice to meet you, cheese!

Super Natural ... and Super delicious, haha.

From Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson

- 2 medium/large zucchini or yellow summer squash (about 16 oz total), coarsely grated
- Fine-grain sea salt
- 8 oz linguine or other thin-ish pasta
- 2 T extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large clove garlic, thinly sliced
- 1/2 t red pepper flakes
- 1 T unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more to serve
- freshly ground black pepper

Put the grated zucchini in a colander, sprinkle with a few generous pinches of salt, and let sit in the sink or over a bowl for about 10 minutes.

In the meantime, cook the pasta - bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt generously, add the pasta and cook according to the directions or until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving a little cooking water.

Just before you are ready to eat, heat the olive oil, garlic and red pepper in a large skillet over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes, until fragrant and the garlic just begins to brown. Squeeze the zucchini in your hands, over the sink, to eliminate any excess liquid and add to the skillet. Cook until tender, stirring frequently for about 2 minutes.

Add the pasta to the pan and add a little cooking water if the zucchini mixture seems on the dry side. Toss to distribute the zucchini throughout the pasta. Add the butter and cheese and toss again. Season with salt and black pepper and divide among bowls or plates. Top with extra cheese if you like.

Serves 2 to 4
(note - I would say this serves 3 comfortably as a main dish. We did get 4 servings out of it, but the last two were quite small and were probably more like 1 dinner-sized serving, and we're both pretty small eaters... so if we thought it was small, it was small).


  1. I know a lot of folks who don’t eat eggs (they’re allergic, for health reasons, or concerns about animal cruelty). Here’s an awesome site that gives tips on cooking and baking without eggs:

  2. Scientists have actually proven that egg allergies don't exist, so....

  3. Well John... I'm pretty sure you are spam and not a real person but I'm not sure why you think I'd want a site on egg free living after I just proclaimed my undying love for eggs on toast?

    I totally understand and respect anyone else's decision not to eat eggs, but yeah, you're barking up tree here.

  4. Glad you posted this recipe. I had this cookbook but gave it to my sister for her birthday and this is one recipe i didn't copy first! Thanks!

  5. It's a great book - you should buy another copy for yourself! :)


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