I’m kind of excited to share this recipe with you because it says “home” to me. This meal is definitely a family staple, created and perfected over time by my mom and served on summer Sunday nights after our Saturday reapings at the Farmer’s Market.
In fact, smelling this cook made me a little homesick!
It pairs yummy indulgence with fresh, whole ingredients, which is pretty awesome. It’s also really simple but full of flavor, so… that’s good.
You can change up the vegetables based on what you find at the Farmer’s Market (or the supermarket, if you must), but I feel I must insist that you keep the carrots, sweet onion, and corn. They add a really hearty, flavorful aspect to the dish that makes it what it is.
This is everything you need to make this dish, as I made it (in multiple quantities — remember, I was making this for a party):
It’s the kind of recipe that makes pasta “worth it” to me, which is something I don’t often feel. Pasta always seems like too many calories for not enough nutritional value to me. This recipe, however, makes me change my tune. The fact that it’s chock full of vegetables certainly doesn’t hurt matters.
In case you didn’t notice from the ingredients picture above, when I made this the other day, I made four pounds of pasta. It was a lot. Turns out, the party consumed less than two pounds.
In other words, Mark and I have been eating a lot of pasta lately. And I may have brought some to work to make my friend Chris eat for lunch. I’m hoping he’s not complaining.
Below, I’ll write the recipe for a four-ish serving amount. So… you don’t need as much as I have in that photo of ingredients above.
Farmer’s Market Pasta
makes 4 servings
- 1 lb pasta (I like penne best, but you can use any hearty, thick pasta — and feel free to use whole wheat!)
- 1 1/2 cups frozen sweet corn kernels (you can do fresh if you want, but that’s so much work)
- 2-3 carrots
- 1 medium sweet onion (keyword: sweet! not yellow or red or anything else)
- 2 medium zucchini
- 2 medium squash
- 2 tomatoes
- 3/4 cup pesto
- 1/2 cup grated romano/ parmesan/ asiago/ combination
- salt & pepper
- 1/2 cup fresh mozzarella chunks (small, bite-sized pieces)
Bring 6 cups of water (salted, if you prefer — I do) to a boil. Add pasta and cook per directions (mine was 13 minutes), adding a drizzle of EVOO to the water.
Chop tomatoes into chunks, salt lightly, and drain on a paper towel.
While the water is boiling and the pasta is cooking, chop the onions, carrots, zucchini and yellow squash.
Saute them all in a little EVOO (enough to coat the pan) over medium-high heat. Start with the onions, then add the carrots, then add the zucchini and yellow squash.
Stir the frozen corn into the cooking pasta for the last three (ish) minutes of the pasta’s cooking time.
Drain the pasta and put back into the pot. Stir in the sauteed veggies, pesto, and romano/ parmesan/ whatever other cheese. Right before serving, stir in the tomatoes and fresh mozzarella.
By the way, this dish is great both hot and cold. Awesome, right?
Once I started being on a carb overload, I started serving it over spinach and made it more of a salad. The pesto offers enough flavor to act as a salad dressing, so it works perfectly.
And, obviously, it worked beautifully as a dinner party dish.