Saturday, August 6, 2011

Zucchini Linguine

Yet another home run from Super Natural Every Day.  I wish all cookbooks could be this inspiring and successful. I never would have imagined that John and I would absolutely love this dish, but we did.  Coarsely grated zucchini on whole wheat pasta is delicious and satisfying.  With just a handful of ingredients and a foolproof method, this is a recipe I plan to make again and again.

Just a pad of butter, a smattering of fresh Parmesan cheese, and a couple of glugs of good (read: non-bitter) olive oil add an incredible amount of richness to this dish.  The nutty whole wheat linguine balances it all perfectly.

We like our food spicy, so I added lots of extra red pepper flakes which when cooked with sliced garlic cloves created an intense aroma causing husbands awaiting their dinner to remark.  (Okay, just one husband.)  Luckily, after this intense scent fills your kitchen, dinner is almost ready.

As with any dish, especially those with limited ingredients, I highly recommend you use high quality ingredients.  Grate your own Parmesan cheese, please, and use your top-shelf olive oil for this one.  Use three medium-small zucchinis.  The larger ones are water-logged and less flavorful.

I cannot recommend this flavorful, easy, and healthy dinner more heartily!

Zucchini Linguine
From Super Natural Every Day

3 medium zucchini or summer squash, coarsely grated on a box grater
Fine grain sea salt
8 oz. whole wheat pasta
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon - 1 1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
Freshly ground black pepper

Using a box grater on its largest holes, grate three medium zucchini.  Place the zucchini in a colander with a few pinches of salt over a bowl for ten minutes (to remove some of the excess water).

Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water according to package directions.  Drain the pasta and reserve a little cooking water.

When pasta is almost done, heat olive oil, garlic slices, and red pepper flakes in a large skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes, until garlic just begins to brown.  Squeeze the zucchini to remove excess water and add it to the skillet with the garlic.  Cook, stirring frequently, until tender - about 2 minutes.  Add the cooked pasta to the skillet and toss.  Add a little pasta water to the pan if the zucchini mixture is too dry.  Add the butter and cheese and toss.  Season with a little salt and pepper and serve with extra grated Parmesan on top.

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