My refrigerator is usually overflowing with vegetables. When I bring home my farmers market bounties, I’ll get into fights with the tupperware and bottles of hard cider while trying to make room for everything. I tend to use up everything throughout the week, but since I still haven’t mastered cooking for one over the past year, I often have odds and ends of veggies hiding in the back of the fridge.
The other night, I adapted this Pasta Primavera from Giada de Laurentiis. (I still hope one day we can be best friends.) The recipe was simple: roast assorted vegetables with herbs and oil, add to pasta, top with Parmesan cheese. Since my veggie selection didn’t match with the ingredient list, I just used what I had: a squash, zucchini, portabella mushroom, spring onion, a sad half of one carrot, red pepper and two Roma tomatoes hiding in the back of the freezer. The great thing about a recipe like this is that it’s a template — you could really use whatever you have on hand by following the same techniques. I also added a splash of balsamic vinegar, because really, it makes most things better. For leftovers, I topped a bowl of the pasta with a spoonful of roasted garlic goat cheese from the farmers market, which melted into a creamy sauce.
Adapted from Giada de Laurentiis
- 3 carrots, peeled and cut into thin strips
- 2 medium zucchini or 1 large zucchini, cut into thin strips
- 2 yellow squash, cut into thin strips
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 1 yellow bell pepper, cut into thin strips
- 1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs or herbes de Provence
- 1 pound farfalle (bowtie pasta)
- 15 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
On a large heavy baking sheet, toss all of the vegetables (Follow these guidelines or use whatever you have in the fridge! Just keep a good ratio of veggies to pasta.) with the oil, salt, pepper, and dried herbs to coat. Transfer half of the vegetable mixture to another heavy large baking sheet and arrange evenly over the baking sheets. Bake until the carrots are tender and the vegetables begin to brown, stirring after the first 10 minutes, about 20 minutes total.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, tender but still firm to the bite, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
Toss the pasta with the vegetable mixtures in a large bowl to combine. Toss with the cherry tomatoes and enough reserved cooking liquid to moisten. Season the pasta with salt and pepper, to taste. Sprinkle with the Parmesan and serve immediately.