What to CookVegetable

8 Simple, Genius Things to Do with Summer Vegetables

70 Save

If you like it, save it!

Save and organize all of the stuff you love in one place.

Got it!

If you like something…

Click the heart, it's called favoriting. Favorite the stuff you like.

Got it!

I hope you're all appreciating your summer produce while it's still here. Soon enough, all our vegetables will start to look mushy and orange and you'll regret not buying corn and tomatoes and green beans every single day the market was bursting with them in August. 

Now's your chance. All the fiery red and yellow and green vegetables are still here -- so go out and get them. And when you do, you'll barely want to touch them. Here are 8 simple, genius ways to let them do what they do best.

Marcella Hazan's Tomato Sauce with Onion and Butter 

Marcella Hazan's Tomato Sauce

Tomato's two best friends are butter and onion. A little salt brings them together in the simplest tomato sauce the internet has ever seen.


Jennie Cook's Zucchini Butter

Zucchini Butter

Use the babies, or use the ones as big as a mutton shank -- all will turn to butter. 


Kevin Gillespie's Creamless Creamed Corn

Creamed Corn

Corn makes its own cream -- hadn't you heard?


Penelope Casas' Garlic Green Beans (Judias Verdes con Ajo)

Garlic Green beans

Sear first, season later.


Jeffrey Alford & Naomi Duguid's Spicy Cucumber Salad

cucumber salad

Bash your cucumbers, then bathe them in spicy sweet dressing. 


Jean Anderson's Sweet Red Pepper Paste (Massa de Pimentao) 

Red Pepper Paste

Salt, time, and a low oven turn sweet red peppers into ketchup's (much) sexier cousin.


Patricia Wells' Zucchini Carpaccio with Avocado and Pistachios

Zucchini Carpaccio

Zucchini at its purest and most fancy.


Alice Waters' Ratatouille


Sorry Julia, but a few shortcuts never hurt anybody.


Got a genius recipe to share -- from a classic cookbook, an online source, or anywhere, really? Please send it my way (and tell me what's so smart about it) at [email protected].

Photos by James Ransom, Nicole Franzen, Joseph De Leo

Tags: Summer, Vegetarian, Long Reads, Editors' Picks, Genius Recipes, Ingredients