Zuk Pasta with Uncooked Tomato Sauce

Super fresh and healthy!

12 oz tomatoes, chopped

1/4 c olive oil

1 tsp salt

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1 lb Zucchini cut into spirals

5 oz ricotta

1/4 c pine nuts

In a 12 inch skillet, add olive oil and zuks, cook for 5 – 7 minutes until soft add tomatoes, olive oil, salt, red pepper flakes and garlic. Divide among bowls and top with ricotta.

Serves 4.

Advertisements

Grilled Veggies and Cheese

This salad is perfect for a warm summer night since it is grilled.

¾ pound halloumi

2 sweet red peppers

1 large zucchini

1 Japanese eggplant

1 bunch scallions, trimmed

Salt and pepper

Olive oil

2 tsp fresh thyme or crumbled dried mint

1 tsp sumac

Balsamic glaze

Prepare a hot grill. Cut halloumi into 8 to 12 slabs, about 1/3- to 1/2-inch thick. Cut peppers into wide pieces, slicing from top to bottom along the natural indentations. Discard seeds. Cut pieces in half crosswise. Slice the zucchini and eggplant on the diagonal, into 1/4- thick.

Season all vegetables with salt and pepper. Brush vegetables and halloumi with olive oil.

Grill vegetables until tender and nicely charred, turning occasionally. If you’d like, use an outdoor grill pan to keep them from slipping through the grate. Scallions will be ready after 3 to 4 minutes. Peppers, zucchini and eggplant take about 10 minutes. Arrange on a platter.

Grill halloumi, turning occasionally, for 2 to 6 minutes, until grill marks appear. When you press on the cheese, it should give but it should not be runny.

Remove cheese to the platter with vegetables and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic glaze. Sprinkle cheese and vegetables with herbs and sumac, if you’d like, and serve.

Serves 2 – 4.

Zucchini and Basil Pasta

This is great for a healthy weeknight dinner. It is ready in the time it takes to cook the pasta.

1/4 c olive oil
8 garlic cloves, minced
2 lbs small zucchini, quartered lengthwise, sliced
Salt
1 tsp Aleppo pepper
12 oz pasta
•2 oz Parmesan, grated
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 c basil leaves

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium. Cook garlic, stirring occasionally, until very lightly browned around the edges, about 4 minutes. Add squash; season with salt. Cook, tossing occasionally, until squash begins to break down, 12–15 minutes. Toss in 1 tsp. Aleppo pepper.

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until very al dente.

Transfer pasta to skillet using a slotted spoon or spider and add 1/2 c pasta cooking liquid. Cook pasta, adding 2 oz. Parmesan in stages along with more pasta cooking liquid as needed, until sauce coats pasta and pasta is al dente. Toss in lemon juice and most of the basil.

Divide pasta among bowls and top with more Parmesan and Aleppo-style pepper and remaining basil.

Serves 4

Zucchini and Ricotta Cheese

This spiralized Zucchini dish is quick and easy! Perfect for lunch or dinner.

Ingredients:
1 c ricotta cheese
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 c grated parmesan cheese
1/4 c choppee basil
1/2 tap pepper
6 – 8 small zucchini
Olive oil spray
Salt
1/4 c pine nuts

Preheat broiler on high and spray a baking pan.

Combine the ricotta, parmesan, garlic, basil and 1/4 tsp pepper in a bowl.

Cut the Zucchini into ribbons with a veggie peeler or a spiralizer. Shape them into 4 nests and place on the baking sheet, spray with a little olive oil. Place 1/4 the cheese mixture on top of the Zucchini nests.

Broil for 6-8 minutes until browned in spots. Keep a close eye on them. Lower the rack if needed. Scatter a few pine nuts over the top.

Serves 4.

Grilled Zucchini, Burrata & Fregola

This dish is from Simple by Diana Henry, she is quickly becoming one of my favs. This dish is simple but rich tasting. You can get fregola in fancy shops or on Amazon.

4 Zucchinis, sliced 1/4 thick
Olive Oil
Salt and pepper
6 oz fregola pasta
7 oz burrata, torn
1 1/2 oz pecorino, shaved
1 bunch of basil, leave torn
1 lemon, juiced

Cook the pasta according to the package. 

Cook the Zucchini in a little olive oil over medium heat until golden on each side. You may needs to cook in batches.

Toss the fregola with 2 tbsp olive oil, zuks, burrata, pecorino, basil and lemon juice.

Serves 4.

Chickpea Crepe with Goat Cheese and Zucchini Ribbons

These make a great light lunch in less than 30 minutes. 

Ingredients:
1 small zucchini, sliced thin
Zest of one lemon
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt
4 oz goat cheese
Pepper
2 tbsp pine nuts
1/4 c red onion, sliced thin
1 tbsp ghee
1 scant c chickpea flour
1 c water
3/4 tsp salt
Olive oil spray
Fresh thyme leaves

Slice the Zucchini thin on a mandoline. Toss  with lemon juice and 1 tbsp olive oil.

Mash goat cheese and lemon zest together in a small bowl.  Season with salt and pepper.

In a small pan, heat ghee and sauté the onions until carmalized. Set aside.

Whisk to combine chickpea flour, water and 3/4 tsp salt. Heat a 10 crepe pan or non stick skillet over medium heat, spray with olive oil. Pour in 1/2 the crepe mixture and cook 2 minutes per side until golden and cooked through. 

Top with goat cheese, Zucchini and pine nuts. 

Serves 2.

Zucchini Lasagna

This one is worth all the work! It takes about 40 min plus baking time. 

Ingredients:
1 lb ground beef
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28 oz can) crushed tomatoes
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
Pepper
4- 5 medium (8 ounces each) zucchini, sliced 1/8″ thick
1 1/2 c part-skim ricotta
1/4 c Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
1 large egg
16 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded or sliced thin

In a medium sauce pan, brown meat and season with salt. When cooked drain in colander to remove any fat. Add olive oil to the pan and saute garlic and onions about 2 minutes. Return the meat to the pan, add tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper. Simmer on low for at least 30-40minutes, covered. Do not add extra water, the sauce should be thick.

Heat a grill over medium heat, grill zucchini about 2 minutes per side.

Combine the ricotta, parm and egg in a bowl and set aside.

For assembly, put 1/3 of the tomato sauce in the bottom of your baking pan, cover with a layer of zucchini, 1/2 of the ricotta mixture, 1/3 of the mozzarella, repeat. reserve 1/3 of the mozzarella.

Bake at 375 covered for 30 min. Remove cover, top with remaining mozzarella and bake 25 – 30 min until brown and bubbly.

Serves 8 – 10.

Grilled Eggplant with Za’atar Dressing 

  

Serve this super easy side with Shawarma chicken and you have a Mediterranean feast! I used grilled zucchini and eggplant, but this dressing would also be great on crispy greens or grilled romaine.

Ingredients:
2 TBSP sherry vinegar
2 tsp yellow mustard
pinch of salt
6 TBSP olive oil
4 tsp za’atar
1/4 tsp sumac
3 small zucchini, sliced lengthwise
3 small eggplant, sliced lengthwise

Combine all ingredients, except veg in a jar, shake to combine.

Toss veggies with a little olive oil and grill over medium high heat for about 2 min per side.

Toss with dressing and serve. 

Serves 4.

Lamb Couscous with Chickpeas and Zucchini

Another winner from Patrica Wells! Perfect for a Sunday night meal. The spiced lamb is out of this world!

Ingredients:
1 tsp cumin
3/4 tap ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cayenne
3/4 tsp groung cinnamon
1/2 tsp Salt
2 lb boneless leg of lamb, 1 1/2 inch cubes
1 c instant couscous
3 tsp harissa
4 TBSP olive oil
2 c chicken stock, boiling hot
Pepper
2 16 oz can, chickpeas, drained
32 oz plum tomatoes
1 1/2 lb slender zucchini, soices 1/4 ocnh rounds
1/2 mint, chiffonade
Fresh cilantro sauce (below)

In a large bowl combine the first 5 spices. Todd the cubed meat to coat.

Place couscous in a heatproof bowl. Stir in 1 TBSP olive oil, 2 tsp Harissa, 1/2 tsp salt and stir to blend. Pour stock over couscous, cover and set aside.

Heat 2 TBSP olive oil in a large skillet over high heat. Brown meat on all sides, don’t over crowd the pan, do I batches if needed. Return meat and juices to pan, chickpeas, tomatoes, 1 tsp Harissa and salt and pepper. Simmer over moderate heat for 4 minutes. 

In another skillet, heat 1 TBSP olive oil over moderate heat, sear zuks until brown on edges. 

To serve fluff couscous, scope onto plate, spoon lamb mixture and zucchini  next to top with cilantro sauce and mint.

Fresh Cilanto Sauce
3 TBSP sea salt
2 c loosly packed cilantro
1/4 olive oil
1/2 tsp salt

Bring 1 quart of water to a boil season with 3 TBSP salt. Add cilantro and blanch 15 seconds immediately plunge in an ice bath. Transfer to a thick fowl and squeeze dry.

Toss remaining ingredients in a blender and purée till smooth. Cover and chill.

Serves 8. 7 WW PP

Zucchini with Mint, Capers and Pancetta

 
This was inspired by a recipe in F&W. I swapped out the pasta for zucchini spirals and bacon for pancetta. The mint really adds something special to this dish so don’t skip it.

Ingredents:
1 lb spaghetti or spiral zucchini
1 TBSP olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1/2 lb pancetta, 1/4-inch dice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound cherry tomatoes, halved
Salt and pepper
1/3 c capers, drained
1/2 c mint leaves, chopped
Shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for serving

In a large skillet, heat oil and saute onions over medium heat until soft. Add pancetta and cook until crispy. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds, add tomatoes and cook until soft about 6 minites. Remove from heat and stir in capers and mint. Serve topped with parmigiano.

Serves 4.