There are nights when only a bowl of pasta will do. We all have them. Long days at work. Tired bones, tired minds. Pasta fills me up and brings on that calm evening glow. I always sleep well after a pasta dinner.
In the summer I often make a quick pasta sauce with shredded zucchini, tomato sauce and a splash of half-and-half. I try to get the ratio right: less pasta, more zucchini, the perfect balance of comforting carbs and good-for-you veggies. A bowl of pasta on the couch, feet up on the coffee table, brain shifting from busy day into sleepy night. Ah, the power of carbohydrates.
Pasta with shredded zucchini
The shredded zucchini melts into the sauce, making this dish perfect for any silly zucchini-phobic family members.
- 1/2 pound fusilli (or another curly, twisty pasta)
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1/2 large or 1 small onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 3 medium-sized zucchini, shredded or grated
- 2 cups tomato sauce (not chunky; canned or jarred works fine)
- 2 Tbsp half-and-half
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan, Romano or Grana Padano cheese
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Cook the pasta as directed on the package.While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and saute 3-4 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, 30 seconds - don't let the garlic brown. Add the zucchini to the skillet and cook for a few minutes until softened but not mushy. Add the tomato sauce and half-and-half to the skillet, stir to combine, and turn down the heat. Let simmer while the pasta finishes cooking.When the pasta is done, drain it and add it to the skillet. Turn off the heat and gently mix the pasta into the sauce. Let the pasta sit about 30 seconds on the warm burner, then turn the pasta into a serving bowl. Season with salt and pepper, then sprinkle the grated cheese on top. Serve immediately.
DetailsPrep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 servings