One of my favorite signs of spring is when our local farmers market opens. Wandering the stalls looking for fresh produce and fruit is the perfect inspiration for a meal planning any given week. This dish is simple to make and you can easily substitute the zucchini and peas for other vegetables you might find at your farmers market.
- 1lb of pasta (see Katie’s homemade pasta recipe or use fettucini or spaghetti)
- 4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 to 3 cloves of garlic minced or finely chopped, or Spring Garlic chopped if available
- Zest of 1–2 lemons (I prefer meyer lemons for their sweetness)
- 2 medium to large zucchini thinly sliced, julienned or shredded
- 1 cup of fresh peas such as english peas
- 1/4 cup of Italian parsley chopped
- 1/4 cup of fresh mint chopped
- 1 cup of ricotta cheese, at room temperature
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Place a large pot of salted water over high heat. When the water is at a rolling boil add the pasta and cook according to directions.
- Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When the oil is warm, add the garlic and sauté until golden, about 1 minute.
- Add the zucchini, peas, and half the lemon zest to the pan, stirring and cooking until tender (about 2-3 minutes). Season with salt and pepper.
- Reserve some of the pasta water and then drain the pasta. Drizzle a bit of olive oil on the pasta so it doesn’t stick, then add the pasta to the zucchini and peas, and toss with parsley and mint.
- Spoon the ricotta cheese into the pasta dish, adding small amounts of the pasta water to loosen the cheese.
- Sprinkle the remaining lemon zest over the pasta and lightly toss. Serve immediately.