Farmers Market Pasta Salad
Who's got a whack of summer zucchini, tomatoes, or corn to use up? I don't actually have the greenest of thumbs, but after strolling the Trout Lake farmers market this weekend as a family, we headed into the kitchen to make a meal together with all the produce and herbs we'd bought from the market. My kids are old enough to handle knives and peelers, and that's all that's needed here. There's a few things to chop and peel, but it's worth it!
I received a lot of questions about the recipe after posting it as an Instagram story (which disappears), so I'm adding it here because it's now a keeper in our house (my kids both loved it, and let me assure you, that's never easy. Like almost never ever never ever ever).
I believe there's a direct correlation between my kids loving meals and them helping to make them; it works every time.
I should mention that this recipe doesn't involve a lot of cooking, which is incredible on a sweltering late-summer day when you're averting your eyes from the oven. The sauce is a vinaigrette, so I'd call it a pasta salad, although technically the recipe is described as a pasta dish and is served warm. I found the recipe in my copy of Epicurious Dinner Rush magazine, which brilliantly presents recipes by season to utilize the freshest, in-season ingredients.
It's worth noting that the fresh basil and chives really add a freshness and pop to the dish, but don't worry if you don't have any. We only had the basil and chives so we left out the mint.
And in that spirit, use any fresh veggies you have on hand, this recipe can be an easy outline for all sorts of variations (we used some heirloom tomatoes along with cherry tomatoes because both were practically busting out of their bins to jump into our bag at the market).
Let me know if you try it!
Adapted from this recipe: Farmers Market Pappardelle
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons sherry vinegar or white wine vinegar
1/3 cup snipped chives
1/2 cup mint leaves
1 cup small basil leaves, torn if large
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion (optional)
1/4 pound sugar snap peas, strings discarded and peas halved diagonally
8 to 9 ounces dried egg pappardelle or dried egg fettuccine
1 1/2 pounds medium zucchini
3 ears corn, shucked
1 1/2 pounds multicolored cherry tomatoes, halved (quartered if large)
To make dressing:
Mince and mash garlic to a paste with 1/2 teaspoon salt, then stir together with vinegar, oil, and 1 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add tomatoes and stir gently, then set aside.
Pasta & veggies:
Bring a 6- to 8-quart pot of well-salted water to a boil.
Cook corn in boiling water until tender, 4-6 minutes, then remove with tongs and cool.
While corn cools, peel lengthwise ribbons from 1 side of a zucchini with vegetable peeler into another bowl, stopping when you get to seedy core. Turn zucchini a quarter-turn, then peel more ribbons, stopping at core. Repeat on remaining 2 sides of zucchini (you will end up with rectangular-shaped cores). Reserve cores for another use (such as soup).
Cut corn from cobs; add corn to tomatoes.
Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Just before pasta is done, stir in zucchini ribbons and snap peas and cook 15 seconds. Drain pasta and vegetables together in a large colander and add to tomato mixture with onion (if using), then toss gently.
Add herbs and toss gently again. Top with slivers of parmesan cheese (optional)