The beauty of having your own garden is having fresh, organic ingredients at your fingertips…at all times! (To say we have A TON of fresh tomatoes, basil and zucchini is an understatement!)
What better way to use them up than in a fresh, healthy pasta?!
This pasta is so versatile…serve freshly prepared or store leftovers in the fridge and serve as a cold pasta salad the following day.
In fact, I prepared this on the fly this morning to bring to the beach for a fresh, hearty lunch for my son and I.
We love the flavour and texture combination of the sweet juicy tomatoes, chunky tuna, and creamy zucchini.
A garnish of freshly chopped basil and Parmesan adds even more freshness to the salad, as well as a salty bite!
(Yields about 2 1/2 cups)
1 garlic clove, halved or finely minced
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
1 medium zucchini (about 1 cup), finely diced
2 small Roma tomatoes (or 8-10 cherry tomatoes), finely diced
3-4 lg. basil leaves, finely chopped
1 cup fusilli or pasta of choice
3 cups water
Cook pasta according to package instructions. *Remember to flavour the pasta by adding some salt to the pasta water (amount as desired!).
*TIP: I prefer my pasta “al dente” (with a little bite) so I always cook mine 1-2 minutes less than the suggested cooking time. However, for younger babies your best bet might even be to “overcook” the pasta so it’s a perfectly mushy consistency for baby to eat!
In the meantime, heat olive oil a large frying pan on medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Add the onion and zucchini and sauté for about 5 minutes or until slightly translucent.
Add the tomatoes, tuna and half of the basil.
Sauté for another 2-3 minutes or until the zucchini are translucent (but still have somewhat of a bite to them!).
Once ready, remove the pasta from the pot, drain and set aside 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the frying pan with 1/4 cup of the reserved cooking water. Sauté for about 2 minutes or until the pasta is well coated and the water has evaporated. Remove the garlic halves, if applicable.
*If the pasta is too dry simply an extra tablespoon or two of water at a time until you get a “creamy” sauce or desired consistency.
I like to add some Parmesan cheese directly into the pan so it coats ALL of the pasta!
Garnish with the remaining basil, more Parmesan cheese (why not?!) and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.
Someone crashed my photo shoot (expecting a taste!)…
Too bad it was all in vain! ;-)