Friday, July 13

Zucchini Pasta

Quick pastas are a weeknight standby for me, and it doesn't get much simpler than this grated zucchini version. The same treatment can be applied to any fresh veggie that's in season, but I like how the thin strips of zucchini blend in with the pasta so that there's almost an equal ratio to noodles in every bite. Since there's so few ingredients, it's really important to season well with salt and pepper (and lemon and cheese) to keep it from being bland. I served the pasta with a strawberry and mixed green salad and it was the perfect mid-week meal.

Zucchini Pasta:
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt, and cook 8 oz. whole wheat pasta until al dente.
  • Meanwhile, grate 2 large zucchini on the large holes of a box grater, sprinkle with salt, and place in a colander to drain for 10 minutes.
  • Squeeze out all the excess water from the zucchini and set aside.
  • Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in a large pan and add in 4-5 minced garlic cloves and a large pinch of red chili flakes.
  • Let cook for 1 minutes, or until fragrant, then add in the zucchini and cook for another 3-4 minutes, or until tender. Season with salt* and pepper.
  • Drain the pasta, reserving 1/2 c. pasta cooking water.
  • Add the pasta, the zest of 1/2 lemon, 2 tbsp. chiffonade basil, and 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese and toss for 2 minutes, or until combined.
  • Add water as needed to moisten the pasta and create a sauce.
  • To serve, divide onto plates and top with more Parmesan and basil.

Serves two - three
*Be careful with the salt as the zucchini was previously salted to remove moisture.