Tag Archives: zucchini

Linguine with Zucchini

17 Aug

Not only is this pasta dish fun to say, but it is delicious and wickedly simple to make. The rest of its title includes the summer words, “lemon zest & basil.” Since it is made with fresh pasta (the kind you can buy), it can be made in 10 minutes, as I promised yesterday.  It is a favorite go-to summer supper for us at home — often preceded by a Salad Caprese (but one where I swap watermelon for the tomatoes, goat cheese for the mozzarella, and cilantro for the basil!). The combination of flavors is divine, and the zucchini gets lightly floured and cooked until golden brown in olive oil. It would be very interesting to end this summer meal with another promised idea from our trip to Italy — chocolate eggplant!  But I’m looking for my photos and trying to find a good recipe to share. Stay tuned.

Linguine with Zucchini, Lemon Zest & Basil  (adapted from Radically Simple)
When thin slices of lightly floured zucchini are fried then tossed with bits of crispy basil and showered with fragrant lemon zest (oh, how I long for the lemons of Capri!), you gets lots of complexity for something quite simple.

2 medium zucchini, trimmed
6 tablespoons olive oil
1 large clove garlic, peeled and smashed
1/4 cup Wondra flour
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
12 ounces fresh linguine
1 large lemon
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Slice the zucchini into thin rounds. Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil in a very large skillet. Add the garlic and discard the garlic when browned. Dust the zucchini with the flour. Add to the skillet and cook over high heat until dark golden and soft, about 6 minutes. Add the basil and cook 1 minute. Cook the pasta in the boiling water 3 minutes, or until tender.  Drain the pasta well and toss with the remaining 3 tablespoons oil. Spoon the zucchini and pan juices over the pasta.  Grate the zest of the lemon on top and squeeze a little juice over all.  Sprinkle with the cheese. Serves 4

#4 Delicious Banana Bread

7 Jan

Photo: Phil Mansfield

I am imagining the tonnage of overripe, black-and-yellow speckled bananas lounging in home kitchens across America.  Why else would banana bread be Google’s fourth most sought-after recipe?  And while I enjoy banana bread as much as the next guy, it is hard to imagine it trumping brownies, let’s say, as the most beloved treat.  But valuable it is in the nutrition it can offer.  My recipe for a super-moist banana bread includes a freshly-grated zucchini and lots of plump golden raisins.  It also incorporates olive oil, instead of butter, for added moisture and even more health benefits.  My recipe also uses less sugar than the more typical bread and that sugar is unrefined turbinado, rather than granulated.  So there you have it.  A very lovely Banana-Zucchini Bread that is radically simple, and quite healthy, to make.  These types of breads  are also called “tea cakes” and are a nice thing to serve for afternoon tea with a dollop, perhaps, of mascarpone (Italian cream cheese) sweetened ever so slightly with wildflower honey.

I’d be thrilled if anyone cared to share a favorite banana bread recipe with me.  I’ve got plenty of bananas lounging around.

Very Moist Banana-Zucchini Bread
You will love the mysterious flavor and moisture that comes from a very ripe banana and a zucchini!  Healthy, easy, wonderful.

1 large zucchini, about 10 ounces
2 extra-large eggs
3/4 cup turbinado sugar
2/3 cup olive oil, plus more for greasing the pan
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 large over-ripe banana
1/2 golden raisins
1-1/2 cups self-rising flour

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Wash the zucchini and dry; do not peel.  Grate the zucchini on the large holes of a box grater to get 2 cups.  Using your clean hands, squeeze the zucchini dry.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high for 3 minutes.  Add the oil, vanilla, cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon salt; beat for 30 seconds.  Peel the banana and mash well.  Add to the mixture and beat until the banana is incorporated and the mixture is smooth.  Stir in the zucchini and raisins, then slowly add the flour and mix well.  Lightly oil a 8-x-4-inch loaf pan.  Pour in the batter and bake for 55 minutes until firm and golden.  Let cool; turn bread out of pan and slice.  Serves 8

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