As far as cooking goes, when it comes to summer cooking, it's got to be fresh, light and easy, at least it has to be that way for me. I hate slaving away in the kitchen when it's 37C degrees, sweating like a pig and dehydrating myself in the process (yes, it's happened before!). It's simply smarter to keep things simple and pasta is probably one of the simplest things to whip up in no time.
Now if you grew up in America way back when, Italian food usually meant spaghetti with meat balls or some kind of marinara or meat sauce. But as I grew up and started to travel the world, I discovered a whole new world of pasta and what a beautiful and varied world it was!
For most Italians, it's all about choosing the right pasta that pairs well with the ingredients on hand. And like the Japanese, they also take advantage of the the ingredients in season and celebrate it's bounty through food.
So when I was trying to come up with a light pasta dish, I went straight for the bag of zucchini that was sitting on my kitchen countertop. Of course I could keep it simple and add nothing else, but as most of my friends know, it's not an easy task for me to do.
So I ran to the supermarket to see what else was in season. I quickly decided on some fresh peas and some lemon to add a bit of zesty flavor. Seasoned with garlic, salt, pepper and a liberal splash of olive oil, the result was a pasta dish that was light, refreshing and perfect for the summer season.
Ingredients400 grams spaghetti
1 cup zucchini, sliced
1/2 cup peas (fresh or frozen)
4 cloves garlic, minced
juice of 2 lemons
lemon zest from 2 lemons
salt and pepper to taste
extra-virgin olive oil
Directions1.Cook pasta according to the package directions or until al dente. Never overcook pasta. Yuck!
2.Drain pasta and set aside.
3.Add garlic into pan and saute in olive oil for 1 minute.
4.Add zucchini slices and peas. Cook for 5 minutes or until vegetables are just cooked.
5.Add the lemon juice and toss.
6.Add drained pasta and toss quickly in the pan, coating well.
7.Season with salt and pepper to taste.
8.Plate the spaghetti and top with some lemon zest.
9.Finish off with a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.
For more yummy recipes like this, check out some of my recipes over at Squidoo!
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