Thursday, July 1, 2010

Shells with Zucchini Pistou

About a week ago, JJ told me I needed to make some pesto because my basil pot is growing out of control. I then flipped through my newest Cooking Light issue, and found this recipe for Penne with Zucchini Pistou. I also had a fridge full of zucchini as they were dirt cheap at the Farmer's Market last weekend. Again, another reason I love cooking magazines - they are seasonal and feature recipes that showcase the season's best produce. 
This dish is very simple, few ingredients, and quick to make. I served JJ's with chicken sausage, and mine with Italian Herb tofu for a complete meal. I subbed in shells because I think they're best at trapping pesto sauce, but you can use any short cut of pasta.

Penne with Zucchini Pistou
slightly adapted from Cooking Light July 2010

4 tsp. EVOO, divided
1 lb. small zucchini, sliced
2 c. packed basil leaves
1/2 c. Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. pine nuts or walnuts
2 garlic cloves
1 onion, sliced
Salt and pepper
1/2 lb. whole wheat pasta
2 tbsp. half and half
Crushed red pepper flakes

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt and drop in pasta, cook to al dente, about 8-10 minutes. Reserve 1/2 c. of the cooking liquid.
Drain and place back in pot.
Heat 1 tsp. EVOO over medium heat, add zucchini and onions, sauté for 5 minutes, until tender and slightly golden.
Add basil, garlic, pine nuts, half of the Parmesan cheese and 3 tsp. EVOO to a food processor, run until smooth, adding pasta water to thin if necessary. 
Add zucchini, onions, cream and pesto to pasta pot, toss to distribute pesto.
Taste and season with salt and pepper.
Plate and serve with extra Parmesan and crushed red pepper flakes.


Debbi Does Dinner Healthy said...

This looks so fantastic! I'm for sure going to try this, thanks!

bellini valli said...

I have been eyeballing this recipe as well. It just looks so delicious:D

Joanne said...

This looks so fantastic! I love anything that involves pasta and basil...thank goodness for Cooking Light!

Sophie @ yumventures said...

I saw this recipe as well and thought it looked delicious. I'm glad you tried it!

Anonymous said...

I have a lot of basil and a lot of zucchini. I'll be serving this Thursday night for company. Thanks! Cindy

Dawn said...

This looks so good. I love cooking light. What FM did you guys go to? The St. Augustine one?