This recipe allowed us to use up some of a) the zucchini which is arriving every week in our CSA, b) our bumper crop of basil, and c) the bags of shrimp I seem to have been hoarding.
This quick-cooking, healthy dinner is a simple combination of zucchini, shrimp and pasta flecked with plenty of fresh basil. Since the recipe combines a starch, vegetables and the shrimp, all you need is a fruit or vegetable salad to round out the menu.
I get a bit snobby when I see a pasta recipe thinking that there isn't anything particularly Italian about it. I forget that while pasta hails from Italy the Italians don't have a monopoly on pasta dishes!
Anyway, this was quick, fresh tasting, and delicious . . . a perfect evening meal after an icky day of work.
Basil, Shrimp, and Zucchini Pasta
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves, divided
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, or more to taste
Pinch of cayenne pepper, or to taste
1 pound peeled and deveined raw shrimp (31-40 per pound; see Note)
2 cups orecchiette or other small pasta, preferably whole-wheat<
2 medium zucchini or summer squash or 1 of each
Combine 1/4 cup basil, tomato sauce, 2 teaspoons oil, garlic, salt, pepper and cayenne in a medium bowl. Stir in shrimp; let stand for at least 10 minutes and up to 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pan of boiling water until just tender, 8 to 11 minutes or according to package directions. Drain.
Quarter squash lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add the shrimp mixture along with the squash. Cook, stirring, until the shrimp are pink and just barely cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the pasta and heat, stirring, until piping hot, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1/4 cup basil and season with pepper.