When it comes to food, I'm what you might call a carb-whore. Bread, pizza, especially pasta....all good! It's 96* out as I type this and on a day like this I don't even want to stand next to a grill to take the heat outside. But I would want something fast, easy, light, and most of all delicious. This super seasonal pasta is just that. I know some people lose their appetite when it gets hot. Sadly, I'm not one of them. I could have the devil jabbing my ass with his pitchfork in hell and I'd still be eyeing the never ending pasta bowl. Oh wait, that sounds like Olive Garden, doesn't it? Hell....Olive Garden...hm, same thing I guess. Anyway, the point being that this bowl of happiness is just the ticket to put down on your dinner table when it's to effing hot outside. You would also be wise to throw a bottle or two of Italian white in the fridge. Maybe a refreshing Tocai-Friulano or a crisp Vermentino. Just make sure it's all stainless fermented so that nasty oak taste doesn't get in the way of your edible enjoyment!
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Shrimp-Zucchini-Cherry Tomato Pasta
serves 3 or 4
2 tablespoons butter (or olive oil if you must)
16-20 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
4 or 5 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon chili flakes (or to taste)
2 medium zucchini or other summer squash, cut into 1/4" slices
1 or 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1 pound dry pasta, fusilli or penne rigate
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Bring water to boil in large pasta pot. Add small handful of salt, then pasta. Cook to desired doneness. Meanwhile, melt butter (or put olive oil) in large (12") sauté pan over medium high heat. When butter melts, add garlic and chili flakes and stir for 30-45 seconds. Add shrimp and cook about 1-2 minutes per side, until done. Put shrimp into bowl and set aside. In same pan add one tablespoon butter. When melted add zucchini and sauté until slightly softened, but still firm, about four minutes. Add shrimp back to pan, stir in tomatoes and chopped basil. Drain cooked pasta and add to sauté pan. Mix together carefully to combine. Serve immediately with grated parmigiano and generous helping of white wine!