Here is a quick recipe for Friday (I am frantically writing before school pick up). I made this for lunch yesterday, and I am contemplating making it again for dinner tonight because it was so tasty. Paired with a salad and a slice of pizza, this is my kind of Friday dinner. The brown butter almonds along with the lemon zest and tang create the perfect balance of flavours and texture to this dish. Oh, and I can’t forget to mention the addition of peas and arugula (rocket) too.
*If you are dairy-free, feel free to skip the brown butter part and toast your almonds in the oven and use olive oil when cooking the zucchini and garlic together. I used a gluten free pasta but of course the choice of noodles is up to you.
Pasta with Lemon, Zucchini & Brown Butter Almonds
300-500g dry pasta
1/2 cup frozen or fresh peas
2 large handfuls of fresh rocket (arugula) or baby spinach or baby kale
40g butter (*or see the dairy free suggestion below)
1/3 cup raw almonds – chopped or sliced
2-3 medium zucchini – peeled or cut thinly lengthwise
2 cloves garlic – finely minced
zest and juice of one lemon
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
parmesan cheese to serve (optional)
*If you are dairy-free, feel free to skip the brown butter part and toast your almonds in the oven and use olive oil when cooking the zucchini and garlic together.
- Bring large pot of salted water to the boil over high heat. Once boiling add your pasta. About halfway through cooking the pasta, add your peas to the boiling pasta. Once pasta is al dente (cooked perfectly but not too soft), strain along with the peas. Add olive oil and toss to coat. Add the handful of rocket or other greens to the hot, drained pasta/peas and toss to allow the greens to wilt gently into the pasta. Place back into the warm pot (OFF the heat) with a lid to keep warm while cooking the remaining ingredients.
- Over a medium heat, melt butter in a large frying pan. Once starting to bubble add chopped almonds and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring, until butter is brown and fragrant and almonds are lightly golden. Remove pan from heat and scoop out almonds using a slotted spoon (or a normal spoon, and return any butter to the pan).
- Place pan with the brown butter in it back onto the heat and add garlic and zucchini. Sauté for 3-4 minutes. Add lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Sauté for 2 more minutes of until the zucchini strips are tender but not falling apart. Mix in half of the lemon zest and remove the pan from the heat.
- Plate up the pasta mixture either onto individual plates or onto a large serving platter. Place zucchini mixture over top and garnish with the remaining lemon zest, parmesan and toasted almonds.