Is your garden exploding with fresh produce? Did you go a little bit crazy at the farmer’s market? Pull out this recipe for Summertime Pasta Toss and put a deliciously fresh, meatless meal on the table in just minutes. Garden-fresh zucchini, cherry tomatoes and fresh basil tossed with spaghetti olio e aglio (oil and garlic) make this light pasta dish a winner. And since September is Whole Grain Month, we’re using whole grain pasta in this one. If you really want to up the fiber content, add some cannellini or garbanzo beans just before serving. Fiber up and eat your veggies!
- 1 small zucchini, sliced into thin rounds
- 1/2 small onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
- 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
- 3-4 large basil leaves, roughly chopped
- 2-3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 4 oz. spaghetti
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Optional: 1/2 cup cannellini or garbanzo beans
- Parmesan or Romano cheese, grated
Step One: Prepare your veggies
Rinse zucchini, onion, tomatoes and basil leaves. Slice or chop as directed. Chop garlic. This recipe comes together fast, so you’ll need to get the veggies ready before you start cooking.
Step Two: Cook pasta
Fill a stock pot or a large sauce pan 3/4 full of water and bring to boiling over high heat. Follow the directions on the pasta package for timing required for cooking.
Step Three: Cook vegetables
Heat olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add zucchini and onions to the pan and sauté for approximately 5 minutes until softened. Add garlic and cook for just 30 seconds. Then add the tomatoes and basil and stir gently for about 3 minutes more, just until warmed through.
Optional: If adding beans to the mixture, add them along with the tomatoes and basil. You don’t want to add them too early or they’ll absorb the oil.
Step Four: Toss veggies with pasta
Drain pasta as soon as it’s done. When veggies are finished cooking, add pasta to frying pan, season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine. Serve with grated Parmesan or Romano cheese.