Friday, July 3, 2015

CSA Cooking - Bowtie Pasta Salad

The first few weeks of my CSA haul were nothing but greens, greens, and more greens. And while I was able to up my salad and smoothie game a bit, I wasn't too inspired to create anything too exciting. But thanks to whatever natural growing season that upstate New York is heading into (I'm totally a farmer, you guys), we're starting to see veggies of all shapes and colors (read: less leafy greens) - and I'm secretly really relieved. Granted, I'm sure I'll be singing a different tune come late August when I can't even look at another zucchini, but at the moment I'm loving it all.

So back to last week's box - amongst the romaine lettuce and swiss chard were zucchini, white turnips, baby kale, and fennel. And because my motto is "when in doubt, sauté it!" that's exactly what I did. And also because carbs are my jam, I cooked up a pot of bowtie pasta and mixed that into the veggies. Served cold, this is the perfect light and healthy summer pasta salad - no heavy sauces, just simple, fresh, locally sourced veggies. ;)

- 1 lb bowtie pasta
- 1 clove garlic, finely diced
- 1/3 fennel bulb, finely diced
- 1 large zucchini, cut into 1/4" cubes
- 2 white turnips, thinly sliced
- 2 large handfuls kale, roughly chopped
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp white wine (optional)
- 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
- salt and pepper
- 1 small handful of fennel fronds, as garnish

How to
In a large pot, boil 6-8 cups of salted water. Add pasta, let cook to al dente.

While the pasta is cooking, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and let that get hot as well. Begin to sauté the vegetables, starting with the garlic and fennel. Cook for 1-2 minutes or until golden brown. Add the zucchini and turnips to the garlic and fennel, and cook for approximately 5 minutes or until soft. Fold the kale into the vegetables and let it soften. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, reduce heat to low.

When the pasta is al dente, remove it from heat. Using a slotted spoon, scoop the pasta into the skillet and on top of the vegetables. Add the white wine, 2-3 tbsp of the pasta water, and the Parmesan cheese to the skillet, and stir well. Cook the mixture for 2-3 minutes on low heat or until the pasta is done to your likeness. This can be served immediately as a hot dish, or place the pasta into a large container and refrigerated to serve as a cold pasta salad. Garnish with the fennel fronds before serving.

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