Ah, summer nights- how do you like to spend yours? When the sun goes down and, hopefully, the temperatures get cooler, heading out for dinner for with a loved one is a great way to spend a summer weekend. Yet, at the same time, with tasty summer produce in full swing, sometimes cooking a meal at home in the air conditioning and with your own half-priced bottle of wine is the way to go!
This past Saturday night Danny and I had date-night-in and made a seasonal vegetable pasta dish that I just had to share with you! Although we were cooking at home, that certainly did not mean that we made this the most elaborate meal. We still kept it simple with the prep time and it all came together in about 20 minutes. Pour your favorite white wine, light some candles, and enjoy a summer meal at home!
Summer Vegetable Tortellini- Serves 2
2 cups pre-made tortellini- we used a prosciutto and cheese variety, but feel free to use only cheese, or even a spinach and cheese one
1 medium zucchini
3/4 cup frozen green peas
1/2 large lemon
2 cloves garlic, sliced thin
1/4 cup skim ricotta
3 tbsp pine nuts
salt and pepper
Cook tortellini according to package instructions. You know they are al dente when they begin to look soft and pillowy and float to the top of the boiling water. Just before fully cooked, add the frozen peas to the boiling water. Once finished, drain and set aside in a mixing bowl. Mix in ricotta cheese and reserve.
Make the zucchini into ribbons by cutting off both ends of the squash, then using a vegetable peeler carefully slice the zucchini lengthways into long strips. When you reach the seeds on one side, turn it over and repeat making ribbons on the other side. Set aside while you prepare the remaining pieces.
Slice garlic into thin discs and set aside. On a low heat, toast pine nuts until just turning golden brown- careful not to burn! Remove from heat and save for garnishing. In a small bowl, combine the zest of half of one lemon, the juice of the lemon, and 2 tbsp olive oil.
Heat a saucepan over medium heat, then add a small amount of olive oil and the garlic slices. Cook for about 30 seconds, then add the zucchini ribbons and cook until starting to soften, stirring constantly. Add the zucchini to the pasta and peas mixture. Drizzle lemon and oil mixture over mixture and gently fold everything together with tongs. Add salt and pepper to taste.