BIG TONI’S ITALIAN KITCHEN

Penne with Zucchini and Basil Sauce

Penne with Courgette and Basil

This is an old family favourite which we have been making for years, its not expensive in fact if you can grow a courgette / zucchini plant in the garden its almost free. It is also delicious, quite light and is quick to cook so it makes a great summer pasta. When the english asparagus is in the shops I often add a bunch to this dish, just chop the asparagus and add it to the pasta water three minuets before the pasta is cooked.

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For 4 to 5 people you will need: 

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  •     500g penne
  •     1kg zucchini
  •     50g   butter
  •     1 tbsp olive oil
  •     2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  •     Sea salt and pepper, to taste
  •     A bunch of basil, chopped finely
  •      1/4 cup parmesan cheese

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How to make:

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Set a large pot of SALTED water to a boil and drop in the pasta,  cook according to package directions or a little less.

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Meanwhile, wash and slice zucchini in strips, chop into cubes

Heat butter and olive oil in a pan over medium heat.  Add garlic and stir.  Before garlic starts to brown, add zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through and starting to brown a little on the edges.

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Season with salt and pepper.

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Let cook on medium-low heat until pasta is done.

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Just before mixing with the pasta, stir basil into the sauce and turn off the heat.  Add a ladle full of the pasta cooking water, toss with pasta and parmesan cheese.

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The pasta water makes the cooked zucchini form a creamy sauce which with the parmesan creates a wonderful coating without using cream.

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Check seasoning and take to the table.

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