Creamy Lemon Zucchini Pasta
With the help of the large holes on a box grater, zucchini is transformed into a pile of soft shreds. Cook it down with olive oil, onion and garlic, and it becomes a creamy, caramelized mush that’s great to spread on toast, stir into scrambled eggs. Or you can turn it into pasta sauce with the assistance of parmigiana cheese and lemon juice.
You’ll be amazed by this prolific summer star of a pasta dish!
2 zucchini, shredded
1/2 cup Basil, lightly packed leaves
4 Garlic cloves, minced
1 Lemon, juiced
1 Shallot, diced
Pasta of choice — I used @rustichellad’abruzzo Penne
1 Black pepper, Freshly ground
1/4 tsp Red pepper flakes (optional)
3 tbsp Olive oil, extra-virgin
Heaping 3-4 tablespoons or more of Parmigiano Cheese
This pasta dish pairs nicely with a glass of white wine. Try Arietta @vivace.estate.winery
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt heavily.
Meanwhile, place a clean kitchen towel in a large bowl (or on a large cutting board).
Grate zucchini on the large holes of a box grater directly into towel.
Peel 1 large shallot and grate on the large holes of grater into towel.
Peel 4 large garlic cloves and grate on the small holes of grater into towel.
Gather ends of towel together, then squeeze over bowl (or the sink) with all your might to extract water from the zucchini.
Squeeze until it’s hard to get out any more liquid.
Heat extra-virgin olive oil in a very large skillet over medium-high.
Add crushed red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, until fragrant.
Add zucchini mixture (unwrap the balled-up towel over the pot for easiest transfer) and add salt, stir to coat.
Season generously with freshly ground black pepper.
Cook, stirring occasionally, until zucchini mixture is jammy, thick, and starting to stick to bottom of pot.
When the zucchini has been cooking for about 5–10 minutes, add pasta to boiling water and cook until al dente.
Scoop out 2 cups pasta cooking liquid and set aside.
Meanwhile, juice 1 lemon into a small bowl.
Add parmigiano cheese.
Very coarsely tear basil leaves.
Transfer pasta to pot with zucchini. Add 1/2 cup cooking water.
Pour another ½ cup pasta cooking liquid over top.
Cook, stirring vigorously with tongs or a wooden spoon.
Add more pasta cooking liquid if needed, until a creamy sauce that coats pasta forms.
Remove pasta from heat and stir in 2 Tbsp. lemon juice.
Taste and season with more black pepper and add more lemon juice to your liking.
Stir in the herbs.
Serve pasta topped with more grated parmigiano cheese and remaining basil.
Let me know in the comments if you try this recipe.
Reel on Instagram
Tip whether to tear or slice basil
Photos by Rosa Basile-Marrello