I haven't posted much about our culinary creations lately. The fact of the matter is we haven't been cooking a lot. Paul started a new job and work has been crazy busy for me. Our schedules have been thrown into disarray. Often when we are home for dinner at the same time we just pull something out of the freezer and 'nuke' it. I guess this is a benefit of being a couple with two freezers and cooking a lot of recipes which serve 4! :-)
We made this a few weeks back when the CAS was still bringing us deliveries of zucchini every week (we've since move onto to more fall-like veggies). It was a quick thing to pull together and while skeptical about the combination of vinegar and the mint I was proven wrong: this is an easy crowd-pleaser, perfect for this end-of summer season. The sherry vinegar combines with the fresh mint to add a wonderful sweet tang to the dish.
We didn't have penne so I used another pasta and of course it was fine -it isn't the pasta which makes the difference so much as the veggies!
Penne with Crispy Prosciutto, Zucchini, and Corn
5 Tbs. olive oil
8 thin slices prosciutto (about 4 oz.), cut into strips
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced (1 cup
2 small zucchini (about 3/4 lb.), trimmed, quartered lengthwise, and cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces
2 ears corn, shucked and kernels sliced off (about 1 cup), or 1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino-Romano
3 Tbs. chopped fresh mint
1 lb. penne
2 tsp. sherry vinegar or cider vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper
Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, put 2 Tbs. oil and the prosciutto in a large (12-inch) skillet, place over medium heat, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the prosciutto browns in places and becomes crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer the prosciutto to a large plate lined with paper towels.
Add 1 Tbs. oil and the onion to the skillet, sprinkle with 1/2 tsp. salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens completely and turns light brown, about 6 minutes; add 1 or 2 Tbs. water to the skillet if the onion starts to stick or burn. Add the zucchini and corn, sprinkle with 1/4 tsp. salt, and cook, tossing occasionally, until the zucchini becomes tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in half the Pecorino-Romano and all the mint.
Add the penne to the pot of boiling water and cook according to the package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water and then drain the pasta. Add the pasta, the remaining 2 Tbs. oil, the vinegar, and 1 tsp. black pepper to the skillet with the zucchini and corn mixture. Set the skillet over medium heat and cook, stirring, for 1 minute so the pasta mixes with the vegetables. Add the reserved pasta water and stir. Serve sprinkled with the crisp prosciutto and the remaining Pecorino-Romano.