Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Zucchini Orecchiette Carbonara

As the influx of summer squash from the CSA continues, I find that I am having to get more and more creative on how to use it. At the beginning of the summer, sliced fresh Zucchini Carpaccio with just a touch of olive oil and lemon juice was my staple. However, after eating it almost every day for most of the summer, I branched out into zucchini mini muffins, Zucchini Crab Cakes, and Zucchini "Pasta". With just a few more weeks of summer left, I'm sure I'll soon be missing the light, refreshing zucchini flavor, but for now, I'm going to continue my creativity. Last week's riff on a traditional dish was Spaghetti Carbonara. I've mentioned before my distinct dislike of peas, so, what better way to improve an otherwise delicious dish than to ditch the peas for one of my favorite vegetables - zucchini?!

Serves 2-3

Zucchini Orecchiette Carbonara

  • 1 1/3 c dry orecchiette
  • Cooking spray
  • 3 slices bacon, chopped into small pieces
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 small zucchini, seeded and chopped
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1/4 c half & half
  • 1/2 c Parmesan, grated, plus more to serve
  • 2 tsp ground black pepper
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. While water is heating, mix eggs, Parmesan, half & half and pepper in a small bowl, and set aside. 

Add salt and pasta to boiling water. While pasta is boiling, spray large saute pan with cooking spray and cook bacon over medium high heat until beginning to brown. Add garlic and zucchini. Saute until zucchini softens. 

Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 c pasta water. Add drained pasta to zucchini mixture and reduce heat to low. Add 4 tbsp pasta water to egg mixture, stirring constantly. 

Add egg mixture to zucchini and pasta, stirring constantly so that egg cooks but doesn't scramble.

Top with additional Parmesan and serve.

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