This summer pasta is for those lazy summer days when it’s hot and you don’t feel like eating a big meal. It’s a no-fuss, stress-free dish that’s quick, easy and super comforting.
The yellow zucchini is cooked softly in a garlic-infused olive oil which is then tossed with linguine, toasted pine nuts, black pepper, fresh lemon juice and just a Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
If you’re vegan, you can easily leave out the (little) cheese for a delicious plant-based option.
What You’ll Need to Make this Summer Pasta
Yellow Zucchini – Yellow zucchini has a slightly sweeter flavour than the green variety which makes it more desirable in this dish but green can also be used.
Pinenuts – These are pricey but worth it. When toasted right they add a rich and sweet texture to the pasta that’s almost addictive. Although pinenuts are the best for this recipe, you could also use toasted hazelnuts, walnuts or blanched almonds.
Olive Oil – I actually prefer using olive oil instead of butter in this dish because it’s lighter. Butter will work well too, but I’d rather have olive oil on a hot day. Use the best quality olive oil you can find.
Parmiggiano Reggiano – This Italian gold can be expensive, but a little goes a long way. The flavour is far superior to anything labelled “parmesan” in the grocery store.
If you’re vegan you can easily omit this for and it will still be delicious on its own.
Steps to Make this Summer Pasta
Here’s the quick play by play on how to make this tasty dish:
- Toast the pine nuts in the oven until golden brown.
- Cut the yellow zucchini in to little squares.
- Boil pasta until al dente.
- Make a garlic oil.
- Sweat the yellow zucchini in the pan until soft but still holding its shape.
- Add all of the ingredients plus a little pasta cooking water and stir well.
- Garnish with extra cheese, black pepper and good olive oil.
Tips to Nail this Recipe
- Always toast pine nuts in the oven for even cooking. Use a timer to prevent burning the expensive nuts.
- Add a little pasta cooking water to prevent the pasta from tasting dry.
- Use parmiggiano reggiano for the best flavour.
- A big pot of water
- Cheese grater
- 2 pc yellow zucchini (500g)
- 40 g pine nuts (2 tbsp)
- 150 g dried linguine
- 2 cloves garlic peeled
- 50 g olive oil (3+¾ tbsp)
- 10 g Parmigiano reggiano (2 tbsp)
- ½ pc lemon
- salt and pepper to taste
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C.
- Toast the pine nuts until golden brown for about 8 minutes.
- Cut the yellow zucchini into small cubes.
- Cook the pasta in the salted boiling water according to package instructions. Mine took 9 minutes.
- In a large pan, add the olive oil, garlic and cook over low heat for about 5 minutes. Once the garlic starts to turn a light golden brown, turn off the heat. Remove the garlic cloves and discard.*If the garlic burns, start over.
- Put the pan with the garlic oil back on medium heat. Add the cubed zucchini and stir. Season with salt and pepper, turn down to low heat and cover with a lid. If you don't have a lid just keep stirring and cook a little longer.
- After about 5 minutes the zucchini should be soft but still hold its shape.
- Once the pasta is al dente, add it to the zucchini pan with 1 spoon of the pasta water, the juice of ½ a lemon and stir. Turn off the heat and add the toasted pine nuts, a little cheese and lots of cracked black pepper.Garnish the pasta with the rest of the cheese, more black pepper and some more olive oil.Enjoy!