Recipes from the Garden – Summer Squash Tartines with Pesto Goat Cheese and Caramelized Onions

Throughout the summer, zucchini and yellow squash seem to be a staple ingredient in everyone’s seasonal dishes! Their fresh and earthy taste never fails to contribute a refreshing and flavorful element. 

Summer squash are a fantastic crop to include in your garden, as they continue to produce throughout the entire season! This is beneficial for a few reasons. First, who doesn’t want summer squash all summer long? But more importantly, their abundant yield means you really only need 1-2 plants per garden. This creates a fantastic opportunity for greater plant diversity in your garden by avoiding mono-cropping; all of which increases your soil health, expands biodiversity, and gives you greater variety on your plate! 

This summer squash tartine is surprisingly easy and delicious. The versatility of these ingredients leaves plenty of room for flavor creativity! In late August/early September, we are lucky to enjoy perfectly ripe summer squash, white onion, cherry tomato, and fresh basil all from the garden. 

Pro tip: If it’s late in the season and you have an abundance of squash blossoms (that won’t have time to mature into full squashes), load up those blossoms with this pesto goat cheese recipe, fry, and enjoy another delicious summer snack! 

Be creative with this recipe – make a full sheet of puff pastry with toppings (like pizza), or make bite size pieces, all using the same toppings.  Baking time is intentionally broad to allow for different sizes, just be sure to check your “tartines” through the baking process and remove them once they’re golden brown.

For the Pesto Goat Cheese : 

  • 4 oz goat cheese 
  • ¾ cup fresh basil 
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil 
  • 2-3 tablespoons lemon juice (to taste)
  • 1 Teaspoon garlic powder 
  • Salt & pepper to taste 

To make the pesto, add ingredients to a food processor and blend until desired consistency. For this recipe specifically, I left the pesto a little less creamy than usual. Add pesto to goat cheese and mixed until incorporated and smooth. Set aside for later use. 

For the Tartine:  

For this recipe, I used 1 sheet of frozen phyllo dough. Let the puff pastry thaw out for about 30-40 minutes until it can unfold without breaking. Cut into desired shape and size. 

  • 1 yellow summer squash – sliced into small triangular pieces (you can slice however you’d like!) 
  • 1 zucchini – sliced 
  • ¼ cup cherry tomatoes – sliced thinly 
  • ½ small white onion, sliced into thin strands. I carmelized the onions for this recipe, but you can also season regularly and bake. 

To create the tartine, layer the goat cheese, summer squash, tomatoes and onions on each piece of phyllo dough. Place on a greased or parchment covered tray and let bake in a 400 degree oven for 10-20 minutes, until pastry is golden brown and flaky, and vegetables are soft and beginning to crisp. 


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