Monday, August 24, 2015

Summer Harvest Pasta


I have a serious problem.  A problem I will mourn when I no longer have it.  It's an over abundance of tomatoes and a basil plant so prolific that it wants to become a shrub.  What to do with all of these beautiful tomatoes?  Salads, check. BLTs, check. Give some away, check.  Pasta...


This is a recipe that I first shared in 2009 and one I love to make every year at this time when local tomatoes, zucchini, corn and fresh basil are abundant and easy to find at farmers' markets everywhere. I felt it was worth repeating as it's such a delicious recipe and one both my husband and I love. 


This time, I used my prolific cherry tomatoes and some corn and zucchini I had just bought at the local farmers' market. 


Flavored with fresh herbs, it's creamy sauce is made from the juice of the tomatoes, a little white wine and cheese. Sound good?


Before the summer harvest comes to an end, please give this wonderful pasta a try!

Summer Harvest Pasta

Recipe adapted from Williams Sonoma
Printable Recipe

Serves 8 as a side dish

My Notes:  You can use cherry tomatoes in this recipe, just cut them in half and use about 1 to 1-1/2 pounds.I like to use the smaller, mezze penne pasta.  When you buy fresh corn at the farmers' market, cut the kernels off right away if you aren't going to use it and freeze in zipper bags for future use (don't forget to scrape off the corn 'milk' from the cobs too). I buy tomato paste in a tube so I can refrigerate it and use small portions such as this any time.  I used Chardonnay wine, which is what I like to drink with dinner, but use any white wine that you enjoy - or substitute chicken broth or stock.
 
Kosher salt, to taste
1/2 lb Penne Pasta (I used the smaller, mezze penne)
6 tablespoons olive oil, plus more as needed
Fresh Kernels cut from of 2 ears of corn
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4-6 small zucchini, about 2 lb. total, cut into half-moons
1/2 yellow onion, diced
4 tomatoes, cored, seeded and cut into 1-inch chunks (add more for a saucier pasta dish)
1 tablespoons sliced or grated garlic
1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/4 cup white wine
1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
6 ounces mozzarella cheese, grated
2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated

Preheat oven to 400ºF.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Generously salt the water, add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until just barely tender, about 8 minutes. Drain the pasta and rinse under cold running water. Set aside.

In a 12-inch oven proof saute pan over medium heat, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the corn, season with salt and black pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the corn is lightly golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.

Return the pan to medium heat and heat the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil. Working in batches, add the zucchini, season with salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the zucchini is tender and golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Add to the bowl with the corn. Repeat with the remaining zucchini, adding more oil to the pan as needed.

Set the pan over medium-low heat. Add the onion, 1 teaspoon of salt and black pepper, to taste. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes soften and begin to form a sauce, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Add the wine and cook until the wine has reduced and the sauce is fairly thick, about 3 minutes more.

Add the pasta, tomato sauce, basil, mozzarella and half of the Parmigiano-Reggiano to the bowl with the vegetables and stir to combine. Transfer to the same oven proof frying pan and sprinkle the remaining Parmigiano-Reggiano on top. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until golden brown on top, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve warm.

67 comments:

  1. Sounds delicious and I do have two pounds of zucchini to use. Nothing like harvest abundance for fresh, summertime meals.

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    1. Thank you, Vee! This dish is pretty much universally loved :)

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  2. What beautiful look this Susan, and the pictures are amazing!
    Love your basil :)

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  3. This look fabulous, Susan! I ahve been on a low carb diet this summer but I allow myself to have carbs one day a week and this looks like a recipe I'd like to try soon as I bought a lot of tomatoes from the Farmer's Market this weekend. Do you freeze basil for the winter? I pull off the leaves wash and dry them and freeze them whole. I use the frozen leaves in tomato sauce I make in winter. You can also puree the leaves, place in ice cube trays, freeze ad pop into freezer bags. That way you cna make fresh pesto or use a seasoning in cooking. Too much basil is a good thing!

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    1. Thank you, Pat! Yes, I freeze all of my herbs, thyme, oregano and tarragon too, using pretty much that same method. I use my salad spinner to dry them :) I love having them to use in the winter!

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  4. It does sound and look good! Thanks for sharing the recipe.Your tomato and basil plants looks so healthy.
    Daughter froze her over abundance of tomatoes to use in soups, chili, etc.for use this Winter. Don't know if she grew basil this year or not, but know last year she made pesto and froze in cubes for later use.
    Enjoy your evening.

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    1. We had a pretty dry July and early August so I think that's why everything is doing so well. I've frozen whole tomatoes to use in chili and soup also. Great idea! Thank you, Glenda!

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  5. Some summers I think I'd just like to follow summer around the world to keep enjoying tomatoes!! This beautiful dish will go on my list. Yes, I'd love more quinoa recipes please.

    Best,
    Bonnie

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    1. I so agree, Bonnie. Thankfully, we can get the stem on tomatoes pretty much all year now so they aren't a bad substitute but home grown, red and ripe are the best!

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  6. Beautiful dish. I love the colors. Summer veggies are the best. I'm sad that it is coming to an end.

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    1. I'm starting to get a little misty-eyed myself! Thank you, Julie!

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  7. I knew you then and have not made this yet?
    Love the look..ingredients..and served in that dish..it looks so sunny and warm and beautiful.
    Your basil is outshining mine by miles.
    Ours is the worst ever..look at yours!
    Oh dear..I want this to continue still for a long bit...

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    1. As you've said, so many tomatoes, so little time :) I grew this basil from seed - a new variety called 'Plenty' from Burpee. It certainly lived up to its name :) Thank you, Monique!

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    2. It feels like we've slipped into Fall these past few day - so cool! I'm afraid my tomatoes will stop ripening!

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    3. I need to buy those seeds next year!

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    4. It's the best basil I've ever grown. I hope it grows just as well for you too!

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  8. What a great problem to have! That's a beautiful pasta dish, a perfect way to showcase those summer flavors that are here for such a fleeting time! :)

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    1. Thank you, Mary! It is such a great way to use the best of the summer harvest veggies.

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  9. What a fine problem to have. This looks absolutely awesome.

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    1. I think you and Bev would love it, Larry! Thank you!

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  10. I'm afraid I have tomatoes up the wazoo this summer and also have been looking for more ways to use them. I love the mixture of vegetables in this pasta dish and can't wait to try it.

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    1. Again, not a bad problem to have. A freezer full of tomato sauce or whole frozen tomatoes would be wonderful. Thank you, Linda!

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  11. I have made this several times and I can vouch that it is delicious!
    Tomatoes didn't do real well here this year, unfortunately.

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    1. Thank you, Marigene! I'm sorry your tomatoes didn't do well. Ours are a little late to the party since early summer was cool here.

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  12. What a problem to have Susan! No seriously, I understand. We have had so many tomatoes this year, we made vats of tomato sauce for the coming year. Anyway, this pasta looks beautiful, and I love the addition of other veggies to the mix. Yum!!

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    1. I hope I can get some tomato sauce made too, Joumana! I'll have to search your blog to see if I can find your recipe :) Thank you!

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    1. Thank you, Madonna! I liked the smaller penne this time too. I makes getting a little bit of everything on the fork so much easier :)

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  14. I wish I could have the same problem, Susan. You must share the tips or tricks growing so beautiful basil too.
    The pasta looks sensational!

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    1. Thanks so much, Angie! I wish you could have the same problem too :) This year I grew a variety of basil called 'Plenty' from Burpee Seed. It really lived up to its name!

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  15. my plant of basilico stay lonely on the windowsill, but can't wait to try this summery and delicious recipe Susan, a warm hug from Trieste

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    1. Thank you, Chiara! I know you will love it :) A big hug from Wisconsin!

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  16. What a great problem to have! You do so well with container plants, mine weren't happy this year. My son's girlfriend sent me an emailing saying they just picked the last zucchini... Seems kinda sad. Your pasta looks like a wonderful meal Susan:@)

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    1. With a big enough container, and not overcrowding, I think I could grow anything :) Yes, it is sad and we've hit a cool snap that feels like Fall already. Thank you, Lynn!

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  17. My gosh, look at your gorgeous basil (bushes) plants. Too many tomatoes? Nah, no such thing except I know there is. How many can you eat before they go bad. Your pasta looks like a plate of summer it's so beautiful. Enjoy your bounty while it lasts. You'll certainly make a lot of friends before its gone.
    Sam

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    1. I need to get some frozen before it's too late. I still have a ton of green ones too - hopefully, they'll have time to ripen or we're going to be having fried green tomatoes :) Thank you, Sam!

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  18. That looks marvelous, Susan! My daughter is here right now and is not a pasta eater. So wish she were, as I'd make this tonight!
    How fortunate to have an abundance of tomatoes and basil....I well remember my zucchini crop was so large we were practically giving them away on the street corner!

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    1. I wish I could have been your neighbor then, Barbara and I wish I had the sunny space to grow it here, I hope you can enjoy this soon ;)

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  19. How I wish I can have your problem! This pasta looks so colourful and delicious!

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    1. It is a wonderful problem to have ;). Thank you, Jasline!

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  20. Oohhhhhhmygosh. This is definitely what I want to be eating for dinner tonight!!

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  21. The recipe looks great! By the way, be sure to check your email!

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    1. El, I am thrilled about the clambake win! Thank you!! We might just have this as a side when we have our clambake :)

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  22. The recipe sounds like summer on a plate! Wish we could have tomatoes and basil in the garden year round. Ha!

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    1. Oh, me too, Debbie! I'll be so sad to see the end of the growing season but I am already making notes for next year :). Thank you!

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  23. I can't believe the size of those basil plants! What great bounty, you have my dear! I used to hate tomatoes as a kid, but now, well, let's just say I'm totally envious!

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    1. Thank you, Abbe! It is a good problem to have :)

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  24. What a beautiful looking dish! I will definitely be making this before the Summer is over and I am having seeeerious basil envy - not a bad problem to have!!!

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  25. This is one of my favorite dishes and I love how you did it up! We have lots of veggies coming at different seasons so depending on what's ready we throw it into this. I love me a great harvest dinner, lovely job!

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    1. What a great idea to expand the type of veggies, in this, Pamela! Thanks!

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  26. All those fresh veggies and delicious flavor on one plate is wonderful. Going to follow your suggestion and make this!

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  27. Delicious doesn't begin to cover this.
    Amalia
    xo

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  28. My daughter and I made your Brussels sprouts soufflé last week, Susan. We loved it! Will post closer to the holidays and will definitely be serving it to family this holiday season. Thanks so much for the idea.

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    1. I'm so glad to hear that, Barbara! That is one of my all-time favorite holiday recipes. I even bake it a day ahead and it still taste great. Souffles fall anyway, so why not? :)

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  29. It doesn't sound good, it sounds WONDERFUL! What a great way to use the plethora from your garden. It's hard to believe in the middle of winter the incredible bounty we have each summer!

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    1. Thank you, Chris! I made this dish again yesterday (doubled the recipe0 to take to a rib and chicken cookout at our friends' home. Everyone loved it!

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  30. Hi Susan, what a wonderful problem to have, love, love this dish. This is the best time of summer when all the veggies are growing like mad. Take care....

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    1. I know - I will be so sad when the growing season has ended. Thanks, Cheri!

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  31. What a beautiful vegetable and pasta dish. It's almost too pretty to eat! Freeze your tomatoes and basil for yummy soup all winter. You are a talented gardner, and when it comes to produce, there's never too much if you have a freezer!

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    1. Thank you, Gnee! Whatever I haven't used will definitely go into the freezer for the long winter months ;)

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  32. Susan, just wanted to say thanks! I've made this twice in the past month. Mike & I love it!

    I'm so glad you mentioned freezing the kernels from corn on the cob because when we bought corn this morning at the farmers' market the vendor said that would be it for the summer. So, I have enough in the freezer to make this a couple more times. My tomato harvest is almost over, but I'll still be able to get some at the FM. Tonight I added a serrano pepper sub for the red pepper and increased the corn. I may try roasting the zucchini next time.

    Thanks again, Cindy

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    1. Thanks for letting me know, Cindy! Amazing to think your harvest is almost over and mine is just starting :) Roasting the zucchini sounds like a great idea!

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