A Recipe For Summer
So, l was home last night with fresh picked zucchini, onions, garlic, tomatoes and a beautiful eggplant. I had some nice kalamata olives and, of course, some French feta (my fave…I always have some in my fridge). I decided to create something for dinner…I realized I had all of the ingredients of a classic ratatouille, but I wanted to make something to have with pasta. Here’s what I came up with.
Rigattoni with “Deconstructed” Grilled Ratatouille
First, as the base for the dish, I decided to make a fresh raw tomato sauce. So I diced up 3 large plum tomatoes and put them in a big bowl. To that I added 2 garlic cloves, finely sliced, salt, pepper and a big glug of a fruity extra virgin olive oil. I let that sit while I went on to the other veggies.
The raw tomato sauce is great on it’s own with any pasta. Just a grating of Parmigiano Reggiano and your good to go.
The pepper and onion seasoned and ready for the grill pan.
I cut the onion, 2 zucchini and the eggplant into rounds and cut up a bell pepper. I laid them out on sheet pans, seasoned them with salt and pepper and gave them a drizzle of olive oil. I grilled them on a grill pan on the stove and set them aside.
The zucchini getting good grill marks.
That’s a lot of grilled vegies!
I brought a large pot of salted water to a boil, while I coarsely chopped about 1/2 cup kalamata olives and set that aside. I grated some Parmigiano Reggiano, minced some fresh parsley and basil (about 1/2 cup’s worth) and cut about 8 oz. of French feta into 1/2″ chunks. Then I cut up the onion, pepper, zucchini and eggplant into large dice.
The vegies ready for the final assembly.
When I added the hot rigatoni the scent from the garlic and tomatoes was so heavenly.
I find that French feta is creamier. I love incorporating it into pasta dishes.
When the pasta was done al-dente I drained it and added it to the bowl with the tomatoes and garlic. I tossed it while the pasta was hot. Oh, the scent! Then I added all the diced vegies and herbs and tossed that. Looking and smelling good so far! I added some parmesan and combined it all. Lastly, I incorporated the feta and gave it a taste and adjusted the seasonings, adding a bit of olive oil. It was all so yummy!
It was totally delish! And see how beautiful it looks?
I had so much grilled vegies that I used the remnants to make an impromptu caponata. It made for a great breakfast the next morning on some toasted French bread and avocado.
I hope you get a chance to make many wonderful summer dishes for you and your friends and family. Enjoy the lazy days of summer. Until Next time. Ciao!