Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

For old quotes, look here.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Simple Summer Supper

I cooked this up one evening when I had friends coming over, nothing to make for dinner, and a lot of partial servings of leftovers. I made a repeat performance last Monday, and it was just as good. Served with garlic bread or bread with olive oil for dipping, and a salad, it's a nice, simple meal. It may even prove healthy (shh, don't tell!).

The cast:
A handful of green beans
One yellow squash
One zucchini
A bunch of asparagus
One small can of chopped tomatoes (I used the ones with garlic, oregano, and basil in)
Pasta of your choice (I like the corkscrews - they're fun!)
Mozzarella or cheddar cheese

Chicken (cooked)
Sausage (cooked)
Leftover veggies of any sort that you think would go well in this
Ready? Action!

First, blanch the green beans. Skip this step if they're leftover from another meal and already cooked.
While the green beans are blanching, chop a slice or three of onion and a few cloves of garlic...
...then cut the asparagus tips into bite-sized pieces...

...likewise the squash and zucchini...
...and the now blanched green beans.
Set the pasta water to boil and cook according to directions. At the same time, heat butter, olive oil or a combination of both in a sauce pan and saute the onions and garlic.
When the onions are slightly translucent, add the asparagus...
...the squash and zucchini...
...the green beans...
...and finally, the tomatoes. This is also where you'd add chicken or sausage (cooked), eggplant, or anything else you think would go nicely in that tomatoey sauna of goodness. Salt and pepper if you like - I put a little of both, but it will do fine without.
Give it a good stir...
...and let it simmer until the squash is cooked to your desired doneness.
While it's simmering, drain the pasta and butter or drizzle with olive oil to prevent sticking. Pasta loves to stick to itself. I think it's what holds the Universe together. I bet right now scientists are looking at the particles in the hadron collider and saying "Huh - so carbon molecules are held together with farfalle, but oxygen is stuck to itself by radiatore."

Wait, weren't we cooking something? Oh, right.

So drain the pasta, de-stick it (the reason I don't rinse is twofold - one, I don't want it to cool off, and rinsing can soggify pasta...and soggy pasta is one of life's great tragedies...right after when ice cream falls off the cone and someone else getting the last Oreo), and deposit it in a large bowl.
Doesn't that look like a bowl full of fun??

Now, while the sauce is still simmering, chop some mozzarella into chunks...or grate the cheddar...or, if you're me and you flaked on the cheese, chop up some sticks of string cheese and hope for the best.

Pour the sauce over the pasta and dot with the cheese.
Toss the lot, gently, until it's well mixed.
Looks good, doesn't it? I'm glad I had leftovers - typing this up made me hungry...and this stuff keeps and microwaves beautifully.

Bonus photo - the salad I served with it:
Abundanza, y'all!


Sashindoubutsu said...

Yes, it looks good! Mouth-watering.. :)

cinner said...

It looks very good, I will have to try it. Take care.

Kit said...

It WAS good! Yummo!

Holly said...

It sticks the Universe together! LOL I needed a laugh today! Thanks for that...oh and the other reason you don't rinse your pasta is because the starch on the surface helps hold all that great sauce you designed cling on! Yum!!

Manchia Bene!

HermitJim said...

Looks good enough to eat! You can cook for me anytime, K...!

Kyddryn said...

Sashin, welcome - and thanks! Nothing beats fresh ingredients for making tasty food.

Cinner, let me know how you like it!

Kit, you're sweet! Glad you liked it enough to suffer through it twice. :-)

Mizz Holly, it is an honor to have you here...and I'm glad you had a laugh, especially if you needed one. May I suggest you check out the cinnamon roll recipe on the sidebar over there? I'm told it's good for a snort, too.

Mister Hermit, sir, I'd be delighted to fix you dinner any time...umm...but you'll have to come and get it, because I'm pretty sure it won't ship well...

M said...

First, I have to say I love your recipe posts. Everything always looks so yummy I just want to run right over. Some even look like things I might be able to do, cooking challenged as I am. However, this response is not about the recipe, it's about you pasta theory.

I have to share a theory of my own now, and that is: “Without felines all life on this planet as we know it would cease to exist.” Why is that you ask? (although you probably didn't ask, but I'm going to tell you anyway, heh). See, when I lived in Michigan we had a forced air furnace and in the winter time the cats would pile in front of it and I swore the temperature of the room would start to drop evne though they weren't actually blocking the vent. Just by being near it they were sucking up all the heat, I know they were! This is what you see cats doing when they are basking on a sunny window ledge, or lazing on pavement despite it being 783 degrees Fahrenheit. They are soaking up the solar energy. If they did not provide this valuable service you can forget about global warming, we'd just go up in a fireball.

That is my very scientific theory of thermal feline displacement.