By this time each summer I’ve gotten tired of finding new zucchini recipes and fall back on my usual routine: slice / saute with garlic / add feta and lemon / top with herbs. This week I turned it into a meal by making a feta lemon zest sauce and tossing it with pasta.
The experiment turned out so surprisingly well and I was so hungry that I only have a few bad pictures of the finished product. Luckily it’s so easy to make that photos of sliced zucchini and cream heating in a saucepan would be gratuitous anyway!
Variations of this pasta are definitely going to enter my quick meal rotation – maybe with some lightly sauteed spinach or tomatoes next time.
8 oz dried pasta
3 medium zucchini, sliced
1-2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
1 cup half and half
2 oz parmesan, romano, or pecorino cheese, grated
4 oz feta, crumbled (I prefer the creamy, less salty Pastures of Eden available at Trader Joe’s)
Juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
Some flat leaf parsley, thyme, basil, or oregano, chopped
Salt and pepper
Get the pasta water going, then saute zucchini in butter or olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When it’s browning and close to done, add half of the garlic and give it a few more stirs before turning off the heat. Season with salt and pepper (go easy on the salt if your feta is especially briny), then add about half of the lemon juice. Stir and set aside.
While pasta is boiling, make the sauce. In a small saucepan, heat the remaining garlic along with the half and half over medium-low heat. When it’s hot but not boiling, add the cheeses and whisk occasionally until smooth and thick. Remove from heat, stir in the lemon zest, and season with pepper.
Toss pasta with sauce and top with zucchini. Add more lemon juice to taste. Sprinkle with herbs and serve.