But then who can tell what it really is that flickers up there in the dark above the houses--the luminous name of a product or the glow of human thought; a sign, a summons; a question hurled into the sky and suddenly getting a jewel-bright, enraptured answer?
We liked it so much that we've now made it no less than three or four times this summer (and we've revisited the ouzo and feta risotto just as many. In a house that doesn't see all that many recipe repeats, this is no small feat!). The preparation is nothing short of simple and, beyond the time it takes to chop the squash into round pieces or wedges, it's one of those meals that can be on the table in under 30 minutes. While I was originally skeptical about cooking with ouzo since it's so potent and its anise flavor/fragrance can drown out the competition, somehow it works surprisingly well with the subtle flavor of the yellow squash and the earthiness of the thyme. I like pairing it with bulgur mixed with olive oil, salt, pepper and feta, but other grains or even chicken (grilled or roasted) would work just as well.
Although yellow squash isn't at all common in Greece and the Berkeley weather is much too mild for proper ouzo drinking (ouzo, in my opinion, needs heat to shine), I like that this dish combines some of the best of two worlds that are dear to my heart. It's almost like being back in Greece, but not quite. Take a bite, close your eyes and pretend to be next to the Aegean Sea. Just call this the glory of culinary fusion.
An important note: you can probably use whatever squash you have on hand, although I've tried this only with different kinds of yellow squash. Depending on your flavor preferences and the amount of squash you're using, you might also cut back on the ouzo, adding only a few tablespoons instead of the full 1/4 cup. The same can be said for the amount of garlic; I'm a huge fan, but I know that not everybody is. In short, as with all recipes, let your own cooking style be your guide.