Thursday, August 7, 2014

Zucchini and Pea Pasta Salad with Ricotta

While I type this blog post, I am eating some of this pasta salad.  It's rare when that happens.  Usually there is a gap of a couple of weeks between when I make something and when I blog about it.

I felt some anxiety today because summer has gone by too quickly.  I feel like my summer just started, and yet kids are already preparing to go back to school.

The prime zucchini season isn't going to last forever.  If you haven't had your fill of zucchini bread, zucchini chocolate cake, or summer vegetable salads, you better scratch that itch right now.

This is the first zucchini recipe I have posted all summer.  Even though all squashes originated in the Americas, the variety of squash called zucchini was developed in Italy, probably near Milan.  

The ingredients for this salad are 1 zucchini, 1 1/2 cups peas, 1 cup edamame, 12 ounces part skim ricotta, 1 teaspoon dry dill, 1 lemon, 12 ounces rotini pasta, olive oil, salt, and pepper.

I chopped the zucchini and baked it with olive oil and salt for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.

The other vegetables in the salad are peas and edamame.  

I added salt, dill, and lemon juice to the ricotta.  I think I should have added more dill and the zest of the lemon; The dill and lemon were subtle. Ricotta is make from milk whey, which is a byproduct of cheese production.  

Once the zucchini was done baking and the pasta was cooked according to the package's instructions, I added them to the peas and edamame.  

I combined the ricotta mixture with the pasta and vegetables.

This was an excellent summer salad.  It can be eaten cold and stores well.  It makes a great packed lunch.

The ricotta made a creamy yet easy sauce.  I would add a little more dill and lemon because the flavors were too subtle for my taste.  

I chose to use rotini pasta because it has so many crevices sauces can stick too.  

These are great vegetables, but they can obviously be switched out for other types.

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