It’s July, and the Zucchini are coming in strong. It’s also Chantrelle season, I forage for them myself (at the right price) I suppose You could substitute any type of mushroom, or leave them out altogether.
I don’t Measure when I’m cooking, The rule with Pasta is there should be an een balance Of Pasta to Sauce. This isn’t really a sauce, it’s sort of a Primavera style pasta. Primavera refers to a spring dish, and well, this is Zucchini, a summer vegetable. I cook for two, so I use about a half pound of pasta. You may have to experiment to find the right proportions.
You may be fearful of the anchovies, but try it out, they break down when cooked and add a subtle flavor to the dish. They also add a good amount of salt, although I usually add a bit more to pull the water out of the Mushrooms and Zucchini.
I try to time my cooking around the pasta water. Because of the Chantrelles I try to start cooking my Garlic about 5 minutes before the water boils. This takes experience. You could just turn down the heat once the water boils and start cooking.
Don’t waste your Extra Virgin Olive Oil for the cooking, But if you want drizzle some on before serving. Also, don’t use a colander for your pasta, If you do save some water because you may want to use it to control your cooking.
1/2 pound pasta (Gemelli Cavatapi or Rotini work well)
2 medium Zucchini (8-10 inches)
1 cup Chatrelles
4-8 cloves Garlic
Olive Oil (Extra Virgin for the finish)
1 Large Onion
1 Can Anchovies in Oil
Juice of One Lemon.
Grated Cheese (I prefer Pecorino Romano for this dish)
1. Fill a large pot of salted water (think of the ocean) to cook the pasta. Cover on high heat to bring it to a boil.
2. While the water is heating, prepare your ingredients, I cut the squash lengthwise into quarters then slice to 1/2 inch pieces. Smash and chop the garlic, and slice the onion into coarse slices. Wash the Mushrooms if necessary and chop into 1/4 inch pieces. Slice the Basil into thin strips.
3. Heat the Oil on high heat until it shimmers and throw the Garlic in until it just begins to release it’s aroma.
4. Add the Onions and Mushrooms, and a dash of salt cook for a few minutes until the mushrooms have released most of their water.
5. Add The anchovies and Zucchini. I like to add the Oil from the Anchovies for the added flavor, but that’s your option.
6. Drop the pasta into the water, stir occasionally, and keep stirring the zucchini. If the Frying Pan begins to dry out and color, add a ladle full of the pasta water to cool the pan down.
7. Cook the Pasta about 7-8 minutes, you want to pull it out before it really reaches aldente. Basically as soon as the raw flour taste is gone you should pull the pasta out.
8. Stir the pasta into the Pan with the Mushrooms and Zucchini, stir to coat the pasta and finish the cooking. Taste the Pasta and add salt if desired. If the pan looks to be drying out ladle some of the pasta water into the pan to temper the cooking.
9. When the pasta is cooked enough turn off the heat Throw in the Basil and Lemon juice wait about 30 seconds and stir in your cheese.
10. Finally drizzle a bit of Extra Virgin Olive Oil on Top as you serve it.
“SpongeBob” mushroom discovered in the forests of Borneo
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