Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Pasta with Zucchini and Tomatoes (and Bruschetta!)

I had planned on making this dish for my grandparents when they came to visit. My grandfather has a very restricted diet due to some health issues. They definitely don't understand why I (or anyone) would choose to eat vegan, but I am determined to become their personal chef this summer and show them just how much their quality of life can be improved just through food.

Regrettably, I don't have a photo of the dish. It's so quick and easy that I devoured it before I could get the camera out. 

Pasta with Zucchini and Tomatoes
  • 1/2 lb whole wheat pasta
  • 2 medium sized zucchini
  • 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

First, get your water ready for the pasta, this dish comes together quickly. Now, thinly slice the zucchini lengthwise, about 1/8" thick. I used a mandolin* to get nice even pieces. If using oil, heat in a large pan over medium heat for about a minute and add dried herbs and garlic powder. 
If not using oil just continue with the following directions, adding spices with the zucchini. 
(Make sure you add the pasta when the water starts boiling!) Add zucchini slices to pan. Cook about 1 minute, turn, then add entire can of diced tomatoes, including the liquid. Cover and let cook on medium until the pasta is done. 

Alternatively, you could marinate the zucchini in the oil and seasonings for an hour or 2, or even overnight. But who has that kind of time. 

To serve, scoop pasta into bowls and top with zucchini tomato mixture. Add salt and pepper if desired.

Now, this recipe also becomes an easy bruschetta. Just follow the same cooking directions for the zucchini and tomatoes. You may want to chop the zucchini into smaller pieces, or you might not. Spoon the mixture over a nice piece of Italian bread and enjoy.

*You don't have a mandolin yet? Seriously, what the hell are you waiting for. You can get a good quality one for pretty cheap basically anywhere. I have a handheld one, it was about 20 bucks. This may be one of the best kitchen tools to have. Now, go get yourself one. Go on. I'll wait...


Tofu Mom (AKA Tofu-n-Sprouts) said...

Would this work with fresh herbs and fresh crushed garlic? I never use dry stuff so don't always know what proportions would work...

Danielle said...

Absolutely!!! I just didn't have any fresh around this time. I actually think fresh garlic would be fantastic, I just didn't feel like peeling/chopping any yesterday!

I would use probably 2-3 garlic cloves (but I LOVE garlic, so use your taste preferences to judge). And probably 2 tablespoons of fresh herbs but you might want to add them at the end since the taste cooks off if you add them too soon.

Let me know if you try it out!

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