Pasta with Roasted Summer Vegetables

Booths lined with baskets of bright raspberries, indigo blueberries, and dark blackberries. In a sign of individually and creativity, the farmers display various berry basket patterns that are both attractive and enticing.

The above is my favorite part about visiting local farmers’ market (regardless of where said market is in the world).  The colors, the shapes, the aromas, the energy.  With every farmers’ market I’ve visited between Santa Barbara, Missoula, Granada, and Cusco… I learn something about the culture.  Something special, something unique, something that is probably a gift from the heavens of that is good with food.

Okay, one quick story.  When I visited Granada, Spain (twelve million years ago), I stumbled (literally and figuratively) down a cobbled stone street, into a small courtyard lined with tables covered by baskets filled with the most stunningly, brilliant, beautiful, fragrant spices I’ver ever seen.  Granada is a wonderful mixture of the Spanish and Muslim cultures.  I was enchanted.

Man, I can ramble on when I remember fabulous food related experiences.  Back to the point!  I am lucky enough to live in a town where the farmers’ markets (we have something like 12 each week) offer crazy gorgeous produce any day of the week.  When I saw this recipe, I immediately thought of Santa Barbara’s plethora of summer squash, peppers, garlic, olive oil… the list goes on and on.

Enjoy this fresh, healthy, summer delight!

Notes:  I used one pint of tomatoes and added in one red pepper, orange pepper, and a bag of fresh baby spinach.  With these additions you might need to adjust your seasoning.

Pasta with Roasted Summer Vegetables (recipe care of…

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INGREDIENTS:  1-1/4 lbs (2 pints) cherry or grape tomatoes (halved),  4 shallots (thinly sliced), 5 cloves garlic (peeled and smashed),  1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (plus more for serving), 2 teaspoons salt, 1-1/2 teaspoons sugar, 1 medium zucchini (cut into 1/4-inch chunks), 1-1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (from 2 ears corn), 12 oz fusilli (or similar shape) pasta, 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, 1 teaspoon herbs de Provence, 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese (plus more for serving), 1/2 cup tightly packed basil leaves (roughly chopped), 1/3 cup pine nuts (toasted)

DIRECTIONS:  Preheat the oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil. Combine the tomatoes, shallots, garlic, olive oil, salt, and sugar on the prepared baking sheet. Toss with your hands or a rubber spatula until the vegetables are evenly coated. Arrange the vegetables in a single layer and roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the tomatoes are just starting to brown. Remove the pan from the oven and add the zucchini and corn. Toss with a rubber spatula (the tomatoes will collapse; that’s okay) and spread into an even layer. Roast for 5 minutes more, until the zucchini and corn are tender-crisp. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in salted water until al dente. Drain, then add the pasta back to the pan. Add the roasted vegetables and all their juices to the pasta, along with the butter, herbes de Provence, red pepper flakes, Pecorino Romano, basil, and pine nuts. Toss well, then taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Spoon into pasta bowls and drizzle with olive oil, if desired. Serve with more grated cheese.

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