Saturday, April 30, 2011

Zucchini & Linguine

I haven't seen the sun for weeks. This lack of spring, compared with last year's abundance of warmth and that glow from the biggest star in the sky, has started to piss me off. In an effort to entice the spring from its hiding place, I offer this dish that requires photosynthesis to grow its main ingredient. That's not the linguine, in case you slept through science class.

This is a very quick meal that will yield a leftover or two, a green salad and a hunk of crusty bread would be nice accompaniments. So would a glass of vin.

As much as I like to make fun of vegetarians, vegans, flexitarians, pollotarians, and pescetarians, it's hard to argue the health benefits. So every now and then, a meatless meal is quite nice.

Zucchini and Linguine
3-4 servings

2 small-medium or 1 large zucchini, sliced into 1/4" coins
1/2 C AP flour
pinch garlic powder
pinch onion powder
pinch smoked paprika, or regular
2 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
pinch red pepper flakes
1/2 C pasta water
1 C parm reg
3/4 lb linguine
parm regg
freshly cracked black pepper

In a baking dish or similar, season the flour with a bit of S&P and some other stuff- I used a pinch of garlic powder, onion powder, and some Hungarian smoked hot paprika. Coat the zucchini coins in flour, shaking off excess, then place on a sheet pan.

As your pasta water comes to a boil, heat up a large skillet over medium heat, you want the EVOO (1/4 C) just below the smoke point. Add the oil after a couple minutes of warming up the skillet. Fry the zucchini coins until golden brown on each side, about 3-4 minutes per side, which will also allow you the time to cook the pasta to al dente. Drain, reserving a 1/2 C or so of the pasta cooking water. You might have to fry the zucchini in two batches- once all has cooked, drain all but a touch of fat from the pan, add a pinch chili flakes, garlic slivers and cook before they brown- about 30 seconds, then turn off the heat. To the skillet return the zucchini, pasta, reserved water, and about 1 C parm-reg. Mix well but gently, serve up and finish with some more parm-reg, couple turns of the pepper mill, and a touch of your best extra-virgin olive oil.

April showers brings May hangovers.

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