Posts Tagged ‘Zucchini’

Penne with Zucchini and Ricotta photo from http://www.bootleg.net

This is a quick, no fuss dish but definitely refined, think flavorful fare.  The recipe is adapted from the cookbook,  The Cafe Cook Book by Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers.  Their recipes reflect the unpretentious country Italian fare they serve in their popular restaurant in London, The River Cafe.  Most of their dishes center around two or three  main ingredients and usually require a few short steps to realize the flavor potential of each.


Sea salt

2 lb small young zucchini, trimmed

2 TBS olive oil

4 garlic cloves, chopped

1 lb penne

12 oz fresh ricotta cheese

Freshly ground pepper

1 bunch basil, shredded

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan


1. Bring large pot of water, seasoned with sea salt to a boil.  Add the zucchini whole and boil for 2 minutes.  Drain, cool and slice at an angle in 1/2″ thick slices.

2. Bring a large pot of water, seasoned with sea salt, to a boil.  In a large heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.  Add the garlic, and cook until softened but not brown, about 2 minutes.  Reduce the heat to low, and add the zucchini slices.  Cook, tossing gently 4-5 minutes, until zucchini is lightly browned on the edges.  Remove from heat.

3. Add the penne to the boiling water, and cook till tender but still firm.  Drain well.  Return zucchini to low heat and add penne.  Crumble in ricotta.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Add basil and Parmesan, and toss to mix.  Serve.

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Every day that I post another pasta recipe especially one that isn’t one with gravy, the traditional tomato sauce served with meatballs and/or sausage, I marvel at the seemingly endless ways there are to  incorporate two great food groups;  Pasta, that filling carbohydrate, whose very lack of flavor (except for Barilla), lends itself as a base canvas upon which we can create delicious vegetable dishes from nature’s own colorful palette.  And to think, growing up in my Italian household, I never had any pasta that didn’t have tomato sauce on it except for Friday’s Aglio e Olio, a recipe that I must post – maybe next Friday.


2 TBS EV Olive oil

1 medium yellow onion diced medium

2 medium zucchini, diced medium

1/2 lb cemini or button mushrooms, trimmed and quartered

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 can (28 oz) tomato purée

coarse salt and ground pepper

2 TBS fresh oregano leaves, coarsely chopped

1 lb rigatoni**


In medium pot or braising pan, heat oil over medium-high.  Add onion and cook till translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add zucchini and mushrooms and cook until vegetables soften slightly, about 4 minutes.  Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds.  Add tomato purée, season with salt and pepper, and bring mixture to a boil.  Reduce heat to a rapid simmer and cook until zucchini is crisp-tender, about 8 mintues.  Stir in oregano.

Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook pasta until al dente.  Reserve 1 cup cooking liquid; drain pasta and add to sauce, tossing to combine and adding enough pasta water to create a sauce that coats pasta.  Serve immediately.

** You can substitute ziti or penne rigate for the rigatoni. Also dicing the vegetables rather small allows them to tuck into the tube pasta.

Recipe from Martha Stewart EveryDay Food

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This morning I made this breakfast for my husband and myself.  It was easy to put together and yummy too!  I got the recipe from The Pioneer Woman‘s blog and she got it from the Fireside Restaurant in the Omni Berkshire in NYC!  Ree Drummond,  The Pioneer Woman lives in Oklahoma and when I saw this recipe, I knew it would be great and definitely good for my perpetual  diet.   I printed it out and first tried it out on my daughter when she returned from the hospital with her third child – good for a nursing mom who wants to lose the baby fat.

Carb Buster Breakfast

Carb Buster Breakfast


1 TBS butter or olive oil

1/2 cup Diced Zucchini

1/2 cup Diced Yellow Squash

1/2 whole Medium Onion, Cut into chunks

Salt and Pepper

1 whole Tomato, sliced thick

2 whole eggs

1 tsp vinegar

1 slice Cheese (Monterey, Jack, Cheddar, Swiss etc)

Optional: a couple of links of chicken or pork sausage


Melt the butter in a medium skillet over medium high heat.  Add the onions and cook 2-3 minutes or until starting to soften.  Add the zucchini and squash, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and stir to cook for 3-4 minutes.  Remove from the heat and set aside.

Grill the tomato slices on a grill pan or simply sear them in a hot skillet.  Remove and set aside.

Bring a medium saucepan of water to a gentle boil.  Add the vinegar.  Use a wooden spoon to carefully stir the water into a circular “whirlpool”.  Crack one egg into the water and allow it to swirl around in the water until the egg begins to set.  Let it stay in the water for 1 minute, then remove with a slotted spoon.  Repeat with second egg.

Spoon the vegetables on a plate or in a bowl, set the eggs on top.  Lay the tomato slices on the side.  Place the cheese slice on the side so that it starts to soften from the heat.

Sprinkle eggs with salt and pepper and serve.

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Linguine with Spring Vegetables

Linguine with Spring Vegetables

Pasta is such a seasonal dish especially when you cook it with vegetables.  The winter sauces are hardy, rich and often made with root vegetables.  Come Spring and Summer, we lighten up the dishes with lighter sauces and lots of garden fresh vegetables.

Coarse salt and ground pepper

3/4 lb linguine

1 lb asparagus (trimmed) and cut into 1″ lengths

1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced

4 oz sugar snap peas (stem ends trimmed), halved

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 TBS buter cut into pieces

2 TBS fresh tarragon leaves

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta 4 minutes short of al dente; add asparagus, zucchini, and snap peas.  Cook until vegetabless are crisp-tender, about 3 minutes.  Reserve 1/2 to 1 cup of pasta water.  drain pasta mixture and set aside.

In the same pot, bring cream and butter to a simmer.  Toss in pasta mixture and enough pasta water to create a thin sauce (it will thicken as it stands).  Season with salt and pepper, and top with tarragon.

Recipe from Martha Stewart’s Every Day Food

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Betty Crocker logo used until 2003

It's not a bake-off!!

It’s only Tuesday but my OCD is in high gear and I think today I made at least 2 new lists concerning the Fourth of July holiday weekend.  We are expecting my sister-in-law and brother-in-law, our friends Susan and Jim and Murray too for barbeque on Sunday – along with possible other couples showing up for a day here and there.  Well the here and there is not making me happy.  I plan, I list, I shop, I prep and I really NEED to know just who is coming on what day!!  I know this is part of my own neurotic behavior BUT it is you know who’s doing that I am up in the air and in the dark.  NOT for long, tomorrow he damn well better make some phone calls.  Whew, now that I got that off my chest….back to my list-making and menu-planning.

It started out simply in my mind with the usual cook-out barbeque fare then the Martha syndrome struck (better sooner than later).  Soon the very idea of having burgers and hot dogs seemed like a bad dream.  No, no, that wouldn’t do; Saturday night’s meal evolved into marinated chicken breasts, grilled asparagus and an orzo and zucchini salad.  Of course every thing is subject to change or whim and until I’m in the check-out line at Wegman’s … well this is what happens;  First it starts out simple, then it gets more involved and creative and then even more dishes are going to be made from scratch, sometimes to the point of the fact that there literally would not be enough time in the day to prep all.  At that point I get out the red pencil and try to be rational about the menu and remind myself that this is not a Betty Crocker bake-off!!

I think this dish is going to be a definite side dish on Sunday.  With an eye to the locavore movement, an easy philosophy to follow in the Garden State and ever vigilant to including green vegetables, this dish has it all.  I found it online at MarthaStewart.com under an enticing heading of 50 Great Side Dishes.

3 zucchini, sliced lengthwise

2TBS plus 2TBS olive oil

coarse salt and ground pepper

1 (I’ll use 2 or 3) garlic clove, minced

1 TBS white vinegar

2 TBS torn mint leaves

Preheat oven 475 degrees

Toss zucchini slices with 2 TBS olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.  Spread on two rimmed baking sheet pans and roast 10-15 minutes till undersides are browned.

On serving platter, sprinkle slices with minced garlic and drizzle with 2TBS of olive oil and vinegar.  Let stand 1 hour or refrigerate overnight.  Serve at room temperature – Scatter torn mint leaves on top and serve

Recipe from Martha Stewart

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Don’t want to eat your veggies? That’s just so…what? 50’s? Nowadays everybody knows you just gotta eat a lot of vegetables and this one easy and delicious way to ingest a bunch of vitamins and anti-oxidents and it is absolutely delicious.

1 TBS Olive oil

1 pkg (8 oz) chopped onion

1 TBS peeled garlic

4 small (2 lbs) zucchini, 1/2 inch dice (about 6 cups), divided

1 carton (32 oz) Chicken stock

1/2  bunch of cilantro, stemmed, chopped (about 1 1/4 cups)

1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced (about 1 cup) divided

Salt and pepper to taste

You’ll need: Handheld blender/Immersion blender

Heat olive oil in stock pot on MEDIUM-LOW. Add onion and garlic; reduce heat to LOW.  Cook, stirring often, about 10 minutes, until onion is soft and translucent, but not browned.

Add about 4 cups zucchini to pot.  Cook 5 minutes.  Add stock; bring to a simmer on HIGH.

Add half the green onions. Reduce heat to MEDIUM; simmer 2 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Add cilantro.

Puree soup carefully with handheld blender until smooth.  Return to MEDIUM heat. Add remaining 2 cups zucchini.  Simmer 8-10 minutes until zucchini is tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper; ladle into warm bowls.  Garnish with remaining green onions.

Option:  Garnish with Creamery Goat Cheese and thinly sliced radishes.

Recipe from Wegman’s

Wegman's  cilantro, zucchini, green onions,

Zucchini Soup

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