Food has the power to transport us -- to take us back to our childhoods, or to a past summer vacation. This Dinner Tonight is taking us to Italy, and we couldn't be happier. Both the Linguine con Vongole and the Tuscan Grilled Zucchini & Summer Squash are deep and flavorful, but neither are heavy -- plus they bring a lot of colors to the table. Looks and substance: a winning combo.
The Grocery List
Serves 1, with lots of leftover vegetables to throw in a salad the next day
1 dozen fresh clams
1 handful of pasta noodles, enough for 1 serving
1 sausage link
1 jalapeno pepper
3 summer squash
10 garlic cloves
4 sprigs rosemary, chopped
1 sprig oregano
2 red onions
Sturdy skewers, soaked in hot water for an hour if wooden
We know you've got a well-stocked pantry and refrigerator so you'll have salt, sugar, pepper, red pepper flakes, dried oregano, crushed red chili flakes, red wine vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil on hand. If not, add those to the list!
1. To make the marinade, combine garlic, herbs, chile flakes, lemon juce and zest, and vinegar in a mixing bowl. Whisk in oil. Place zucchini and squash into a lage resealable plastic bag, pour the marinade over, and seal. Allow to marinate 30 minutes, though longer is great if you have time.
2. While the vegetables are marinating, clean your clams and cook them in 2 inches of salted, boiling water. Once they're opened, take the clams out of their shells, coarsely chop them and set them aside. Reserve the clam broth in the pan.
3. Cook the sausage, and crumble it. Set aside.
4. Saute your garlic in the rendered fat from the sausage. Once it's golden, add the rest of the ingredients for the sauce. Put on a pot of water to boil.
6. Remove the zucchini and squash from marinade, and grill 'em up.
7. Put your pasta in your now-boiling water and cook according to directions on the box. While it's cooking, finish up your sauce.
8. Once the pasta's out, toss it with the sauce and serve with your grilled vegetables. Buon appetito!
Photos by Karen Mordechai and Sarah Shatz