it was over 100 degrees a few days last week and we had invited some friends to come over for a mid-week dinner...i did not want to turn on the oven...and had stocked up on tons of beautiful vegetables at the tuesday napa farmer's market....so i turned to my tried and true summer go-to pasta. the beauty of this dish is that it is incredibly flexible...you can make this with whatever vegetables you like...but this time i had lots of yellow squash, zucchini, red onions and tomatoes. the secret to the taste is that the vegetables are grilled....and, when they are prepared outside using a bbq grill, the dish is pure bliss...
today, i am posting a pasta recipe using 2 kinds of summer squash, onions and tomatoes...but i have made it with all types of squash, eggplants, peppers, mushrooms, asparagus, corn...you name it...anything that sounds like it would taste good grilled works.
grilled vegetable pasta
3 yellow crookneck squash*, sliced lengthwise about 1/2 inch thick
3 zucchini*, sliced lengthwise about 1/2 inch thick
1 large onion*, sliced lengthwise about 1/2 inch thick
3-4 heirloom tomatoes*, sliced lengthwise about 1 inch thick
1 cup mixed fresh herbs* (basil, italian parsley, mint, rosemary, thyme..whatever you like) roughly chopped
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
freshly cracked black pepper
1 lb pasta..again, whatever type you like... i used pappardelle in this recipe)
good aged balsamic vinegar for drizzling
additional e.v.o.o. for drizzling
freshly shredded parmigiano-reggiano cheese
*locally grown and organic or sustainably grown if you can*
prepare charcoal grill...i prefer using hardwood coals...better for the environment and they do not have that bad "chemical" smell.
meanwhile, place vegetables in a rimmed dish and pour the olive oil over the vegetables. add 1/2 the herbs, a generous pinch of salt and 1 tsp pepper and gently toss the mixture until the vegetable are completely covered with oil. set aside while grill is getting hot.
when grill is hot remove crooknecks, zucchini and onion slices from pan and place on grill...(reserve olive oil from dish)...give squash a minute or two and check for nice grill marks. brush top side and turn allowing to grill until just cooked through. add tomato slices during last minute of cooking....you do not need to turn tomatoes. remove vegetables from grill and add to a large serving bowl.
while waiting for coals to get hot, bring a large pot of well salted water to a rapid boil. just before placing vegetables on grill, add pasta to boiling water and cook for 8-10 minutes until al dente'. drain and add to serving bowl containing grilled vegetables. pour reserved olive oil over pasta/vegetables and gently stir. add remaining 1/2 cup fresh herbs and a drizzle (about a tsp.) of the vinegar to bowl and stir again. taste and add additional salt & pepper if needed. drizzle with additional e.v.o.o if desired. garnish with chives and serve. pass the cheese separately.so...my friends loved the dinner and promptly asked for it to be served again on labor day next week and...since i have 20 people coming to dinner the day before with a much more complicated menu planned...i think grilled vegetable pasta is the perfect solution to entertaining two days in a row.... yeah summer!!
for those of you in the usa...what are you making for the holiday?...actually...for everyone...what are you eating this weekend?
napa farmhouse 1885
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