Think of this recipe as summer in a bowl. The sweet corn, bursting cherry tomatoes, and tender zucchini lighten up a savory, satisfying bowl of pasta. Proof that meatless dishes can be quick, easy, and a joy to eat! —Gena Hamshaw
large zucchini or summer squash, sliced in half lengthwise and then chopped into 1/2 inch thick slices
large red onion, chopped
cloves garlic, crushed
olive oil, divided into 3 tbsp and 1 tbsp
penne or farfalle pasta
torn basil leaves
fresh oregano leaves
Coarse salt and black pepper to taste
pine nuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Set a pot of boiled water on the stove to boil.
Toss vegetables and garlic with olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Keep the corn separate, however. Divide all vegetables save corn onto baking sheets and start roasting them for 35-40 minutes, or until they’re vegetables are becoming sweet, golden, and slightly caramelized (to get this effect, you’ll want to avoid tossing them around too much as they cook). Fifteen minutes before the end of the roasting process, add the corn, which cooks a little faster than the other vegetables!
If you’re using the pine nuts, now is the time to toast them gently in a large frying pan set over medium heat. Stir them continually, and remove them as soon as they’re becoming golden.
Cook pasta till tender but slightly al dente. Drain and return to pot, reserving a small amount of the cooking liquid.
Add the roast vegetables, along with remaining 1 tbsp olive oil and a tiny bit of the cooking liquid, to the pasta. Toss in the basil and oregano, and serve, topped with toasted pine nuts if desired.
Note: most fresh pastas do contain egg or milk. So use any of the popular dry brands, like Barilla or De Cecco. Whole wheat pasta if you’re feeling crunchy. And if you happen to be making dinner for a vegan with a gluten allergy (or anyone with a gluten allergy), don’t freak out. You can use brown rice or quinoa pasta in place of the regular pasta. They’re both a fantastic option for gluten free diners, and in my opinion, much tastier and more authentic than whole wheat pasta!