I’ve been doing some serious cooking for about the past week or so. If there is such a thing of kitchen karma, then I consider myself blessed. Everything that has come out of my lil’ 60 sq. ft. kitchen has been pure gold and these two meals are no exception. If there was going to be a dinner duel, I’d prepare for a serious battle of skill and wit. Not only do they both kick some serious whoop ass, they both use up two halves of one 500 gram package of spaghetti. If they were to step into the dinner ring it would be difficult to pick a winner. But for the sake of keeping things interesting, let’s take stock.
In the green corner: fresh peas & zucchini with spaghetti
It’s kind of funny, but Cornelius and I don’t even really like zucchini but I bought some baby ones this past weekend at an actual farm. They just looked so cute and so gosh darn healthy that I bought three. I also bought a bag of fresh peas, so when I made dinner tonight, I knew that I could make some kind of meal out of my farm haul. Who knew that we’d not only be eating up our bowls with utter delight, but both of us ran back to the kitchen table to grab seconds. Even when my seconds were mainly everything but the pasta it was still an incredible bowlful of veggie RAD. If I did have to deduct points (we are still speaking of a duel, after all), it did require some extra effort since I had to slice 3 zukes and shuck the peas. Not a big deal…just crank the tunes loud and you’ll do fine. For me, it’s the summer of Thee Headcoatees so turn it up.
In the red corner: creamy spaghetti with 2 kinds of tomatoes
I made this meal late at night last week. Light was low (hence the crappy photos), but please don’t let that be the deciding factor. This meal was a taste sensation! This is a true no-cook sauce since the tomatoes get all lovely and marinated from the pesto, garlic and oil and the hot pasta melts the goat cheese into a creamy sauce. Ideal for a hot summer night! This meal is packed with flavour and once again, we both went back for seconds…waistlines be damned! Now, if I did have to remove battle points, Cornelius found the pasta a bit dry. A small quibble perhaps that would certainly be remedied with a splash or two of pasta water, but I certainly wouldn’t cry defeat! This pasta won’t go down without a fight.
And the winner is….both (duh)!
Seriously, I couldn’t make up my mind. They are both simple to prepare and they make use of all the goodness summer has to offer. How can you go wrong with either pasta? Why not just have your own smackdown and make them both!
fresh peas & zucchini with spaghetti
250 g spaghetti
1 T olive oil
1/2 t red chili flakes
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 baby zucchini, sliced thin
1 lb peas, shucked
salt & pepper
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1/2 lemon
10 mint leaves, chopped
20 basil leaves, chopped
1/4 c crumbled feta cheese
Prepare pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet and add in garlic and chili flakes. Stir about until fragrant and add in peas and zucchini, stirring occasionally. After a few minutes, season with salt and pepper and add in the lemon zest, juice and the basil and mint leaves. Saute for a few minutes more and then toss with drained pasta. Crumble feta over top and enjoy. Really, really enjoy.
creamy spaghetti with 2 kinds of tomatoes
250 g spaghetti
3 fresh tomatoes, diced
4 sun dried tomatoes, diced
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 heaping T basil pesto
salt & pepper
1 T olive oil
3 T goat cheese
zest & juice from 1 lemon
handful of fresh basil, torn
Prepare pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, combine the tomatoes, pesto, olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic together in a large bowl. Let the flavours meld as the pasta cooks. Add the drained pasta, goat cheese, basil, zest and lemon juice to the bowl, toss well so the pasta gets coated everything and serve. Mmmmmmm.
As far as I’m concerned, EVERYTHING that you post about is a perfect meal; but those pasta dishes are definitely exceptional!! Yum!!
These look great – I’m always looking for easy pasta dishes.
I wouldn’t be able to pick favorites either, Kickpleat – these two look so good!
Gosh those look good. I just love Feta cheese.
And I also wanted to say that those little appetizer gems you made in a previous for a book party looked soooo good.
hey, I also made a pasta dish yesterday which was dynomite. I roasted the eggplant and sliced mushrooms in the oven with diced garlic, olive oil and chili pepper flakes. Threw that in with the cook/drained linguine. Opened up a can of anchovies and tore them into bits and in they went with the pasta. Picked some fresh oregano leaves from my potted plant, a few curls of parmigiano with the vegetable peeler and…what a flavour sensation. My husband who is not a fan of pasta dishes asked if he could take the leftovers to work for lunch.
Both of your pasta dishes sound delicious. I’m more partial to tomatoes that peas however, but I do like the inclusion of fresh herbs in the green pasta dish…okay-okay…it’s a tie!!
Both of these sound (and look) wonderful! Love goat cheese too! Can’t wait to try them! 🙂
Yummy summer pasta! You have inspired me to create my own.
thanks for the great choices I love your site!
I can only hope that these gems will turn hubby into a wild man.
Yum! I vote for the green corner. I wish fresh peas were in season here in Oz, boo hoo ;(
aw shucks, veggiegirl. thanks!
s, they are great! give ’em a go.
eatme, the 2nd was was delicious…but they both were pretty fantastic.
thanks patricia, i biased in that they both are great!
dawn, i’m a feta fan myself! thanks 🙂
sounds delish, bijoux. i might have to give eggplants another try!
indeed, liv moe 🙂
thanks tina, let me know if you give them a try!
hag, so yummy. glad i could inspire!
thank you, elk.
eviedee, i should hope so!!
fresh peas are the best, aren’t they christie?
This is not a request for product review in any way. It’s just that I love your blog, I love your recipes and simply would love to have you use our pasta in hopes that you will love it. Al Dente Pasta, which I think is available in Vancouver as we just got a call from a film producer who wants some for a movie that is going to be shot in Vancouver and told us they found it in a store-Whole Foods? If you do find it and try it, let me know what you think. If you can’t find it but would like some, let me know.
Hi! I made the spaghetti with tomatoes last night, with some grilled chicken on the side and it really hit the spot! The recipe is a keeper 🙂 I mostly love that there’s no cooking involved beside the boiling of pasta.
monique, thanks i’ll keep my eye out for it.
glad you loved it stefanie! it’s perfect for all this heat we’ve been having 🙂
I made the two-tomato pasta last night, and it was super easy and pretty tasty too. The only thing that kept it from being incredibly, awesomely tasty in my book was the lemon. I found that adding the amount the recipe calls for made the lemony flavor overwhelm the others. When I make this again I’ll add the lemon juice bit by bit so I can be sure to get the right amount. Thanks for sharing this recipe! (And all the others, too!)
I made a modified version of the zucchini/pea pasta (I used goat cheese that was on hand instead of feta and added a small amount of chicken broth). It was absolutely delicious, and even my picky husband loved it.
erin, glad you tried it! i do love a blast of lemon, but i can understand that not everyone shares my tastes 😉
anon, glad you gave it a go! yum.
I just posted my version of your creamy pasta. It was delicious!!! Thanks for sharing it with us!