Zucchini Pasta with Pistachios and Parmesan
- 1 pound paccheri or rigatoni (or your favorite noodle)
- 2 pounds zucchini (about 4 large zucchini), diced into ¼-inch-thick pieces
- ¼ cup, plus 2 tablespoons, extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 7 medium garlic cloves, peeled and quartered
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 5 to 7 fresh basil leaves, plus more for garnish
- 1 cup dry white wine or chicken stock
- 1 lemon, juice and zest
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese, for garnish
- ½ cup shelled, roasted and salted pistachios, chopped, for garnish
Preheat the oven to 425ºF and bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Heavily salt the water, add the pasta and cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Drain and reserve 2 ½ cups of pasta water for later.
Toss half of the chopped zucchini with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with salt and place in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, flipping halfway through, until the zucchini is golden brown and crisp.
In a separate large skillet over medium-high heat combine remaining 1⁄4 cup olive oil, zucchini, onion and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and stir to combine. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the zucchini starts to soften and lightly caramelize, about 12 to 15 minutes. Remove the lid and deglaze with white wine, cook, stirring occasionally, until the wine has evaporated, about 5 minutes.
Transfer the mixture into a blender, along with crushed red pepper flakes, basil leaves, the zest of 1 lemon and 1⁄2 cup reserved pasta water and blend until smooth. Pour back into the large skillet, add the pasta, and toss to coat. Add pasta water, 1⁄2 cup at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Finish with lemon juice.
Add more pasta water as needed to thicken the sauce. Season to taste. Divide into serving bowls, top with roasted zucchini, Parmesan, chopped pistachios, basil leaves and drizzle with olive oil. Enjoy!
© Recipe courtesy of Elena Besser on the Today Show.
SEPTEMBER WINE CLUB:
SILKY WINE STYLE
Straw yellow in color with hues of green. The nose is elegant and has an aromatic fragrance of floral and exotic fruity notes. The palate is soft, enveloping with a long and pleasant persistence and an excellent balance.
Varietals: 50% Sauvignon Blanc, 40% Chardonnay, 10% Ribolla Gialla
Analysis: 13% alcohol / volume
Denomination: IGP Trevenezie
Serving Temperature: 46.4ºF-50ºF
Food Pairings: This wine is perfect for a tasting menu as well as an aperitif. It is the perfect match for fish dishes, stewed or barbecued white meat, and savory main dishes like pasta, risotto or soups.
This white wine is characterized by an evocative and perfect symbiosis between the flavor of Sauvignon, the embracing softness of the International Chardonnay, and the pleasant freshness and vivacity of the Ribolla Gialla – an original wine variety from the region.
Passed down from generation to generation, the Reguta winery has been producing excellent wines in the Italian region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia since 1928. Second and third generations – Giuseppe and Luigi Anselmi and their sons continue the family’s traditions while expanding their high quality products. Located near the Adriatic Sea, the vineyards benefit from dry summers and mild winters, allowing the winery to produce a variety of both native and international grapes. Learn more here.