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Braised Zucchini, Cherry Tomato, and Chickpea Pasta + Le Creuset Giveaway

Braised Zucchini, Cherry Tomato, and Chickpea Pasta Recipe

Braised Zucchini, Cherry Tomato, and Chickpea PastaSponsored Recipe
Pasta night is the perfect opportunity for using up whatever you have in abundance. In the winter, I like throwing together pasta dinners with kalamata olives, artichoke hearts, and sun-dried tomatoes from the pantry, but in the summer, the possibilities are kind of endless. Because everything! Is! In season!

(Okay, maybe not everything — but it seems that way when you’re at the farmers market in July and there are peaches and corn and summer squash as far as the eye can see.)

Pasta & TomatoesHeirloom Zucchini
I’m a total sucker for heirloom summer squash even though it doesn’t taste much different than your average green zucchini. But look: stripes! Any summer squash you can get your hands on will work for this recipe — the type of squash doesn’t matter, but how thick you slice it definitely does.

Braising is a cooking method where you first cook a food on high heat, then you add liquid and finish cooking it over low heat until it’s tender. With zucchini, if you cut the slices too thin, when they’re finished cooking, they’ll be mushy and fall apart. You don’t want that! Cutting them thick ensures that they’ll be tender all the way through, but still firm enough to keep their shape.

Le Creuset LidLe Creuset Saucier
For a little color, I added an assortment of grape and cherry tomatoes; to make the meal more substantive, chickpeas add a little bit of protein to the mix. And then there’s the finishing touch — gremolata, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, and grated parmesan cheese.

Braised Zucchini, Cherry Tomato, and Chickpea Pasta
The best thing about this recipe is how adaptable it is. Green beans and fresh corn could be added in or substituted for either the tomatoes or zucchini; lentils or white beans could be used instead of the chickpeas. Not a fan of parsley? Switch out the gremolata with your favorite pesto. In the fall, try using kale or Brussels sprouts; in the spring, asparagus works perfectly with the bright lemony flavor of the gremolata.

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10 Comments

  • Reply
    Anneli
    July 24, 2014 at 8:34 am

    I love all pasta and this recipe looks so fresh and summery that I can’t wait to make it! I work long shifts and I love to find delicious, healthy, quick dinners to make. I’ll have to subsititute the chickpeas (which I love) for another bean as one of my kids has an allergy. I’m looking forward to giving this a try… probably this weekend!

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      July 25, 2014 at 2:15 pm

      I think cannellini beans would work well. I hope you enjoy the recipe! 🙂

  • Reply
    Marta @ What should I eat for breakfast today
    July 24, 2014 at 8:44 am

    I’m starting to like squash, as I had some bad experience earlier. I made a soup with it today and I loved it. Pasta sounds divine.

  • Reply
    Abby @ The Frosted Vegan
    July 24, 2014 at 8:50 am

    I just had a pasta dish like this for dinner last night! I love taking advantage of all the lovely tomatoes going on right now!

  • Reply
    Jacki @ Two Forks One Love
    July 24, 2014 at 9:03 am

    I love the shape of that pasta! I bet it would hold a sauce very well.

    • Reply
      Kiersten Frase
      July 25, 2014 at 2:11 pm

      Isn’t it fun? I subscribe to the Fancy food box and it came in there a few months ago. I was saving it for something special! 🙂

  • Reply
    Elisa @ Insalata di Sillabe
    July 25, 2014 at 6:36 am

    I love everything about this pasta dish…probably because I am huge fan of anything pasta! And, even if all the possible variations sound amazing, this one right here is the best, in my opinion! Summer in a plate!

    xo, Elisa

  • Reply
    Tom @ Raise Your Garden
    July 25, 2014 at 6:47 am

    Wow I love all the fresh veggies and especially the zucchini I have a lot ouch’s coming up right now in my Buffalo, NY garden.

  • Reply
    Joanne
    July 29, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    A big bowl of this is a prime example of why summer eating is the best! How can you even go wrong?!

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