Primavera is an Italian pasta dish designed to cook with fresh, local, seasonal vegetables. With our beautiful weather and farm-fresh produce so readily available at our local Santa Clara county farmers markets, there’s no excuse for not taking a stroll through the farmers market in your neighborhood. Local farmers are there every week offering their best fruits and vegetables at great prices. So stop by a farmers market and make this lovely Farm-fresh Pasta Primavera tonight. For the complete Week 20 Meal Plan, go to “Week 20 Easy Meals Plan & Grocery List.”
From this week’s groceries you will need:
(Note: these weekly meals are planned for one person but are easily adjusted for more.)
1/4 pound uncooked fettuccini (or other pasta of your choice)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 small cauliflower
1 broccoli crown
handful romano green beans (or regular green beans) (romano green beans are on special this week at Cosentino’s)
1 red bell pepper
1/2 purple onion left from Day 1’s meal (reserve the remaining 1/4 purple onion in the fridge to use later this week.)
1 garlic clove
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
salt and pepper
1/4 – 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 bag ready-to-eat salad greens (Fresh Express is on special this week at Cosentino’s)
1/2 cucumber leftover from day 1’s meal
salad dressing of your choice
Note: For the complete Week 20 Grocery List, go to Week 20 Easy Meals Plan & Grocery List.
• Bring a pot of water to boil over high heat. When boiling, stir in the pasta and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Set the timer for the appropriate number of minutes according to the package directions. When done, drain the pasta in a colander.
• While the pasta is cooking, bring a saucepan of water to boil over high heat.
• Cut the cauliflower in half. Wrap up one half and store in the fridge to use later this week. Cut the other half into florets.
• Cut off and discard the bottom stem of the broccoli crown. Cut the broccoli into florets.
• Wash the green beans under cold running water and trim off and discard the stem ends.
• Place the cauliflower and broccoli florets and the green beans in the boiling water for 2 minutes. Drain immediately and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
• Cut the red bell pepper in half. Wrap up one half and store it the fridge to use later this week. Rinse the other half under cold running water, washing out and discarding the seeds. Thinly slice the bell pepper.
• Remove and discard the peel from the half purple onion and dice the onion.
• Peel and mince the garlic clove.
• Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter together in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When shimmering hot, add the diced onion sliced red bell pepper and minced garlic. Sauté for 3 minutes until onion and bell pepper have softened.
• Add the slightly-cooked cauliflower, broccoli and green beans to the skillet. Sauté for a couple of minutes until vegetables begin to get browned around the edges.
• Add the cooked, drained pasta to the skillet and drizzle additional olive oil over it. Using tongs, toss the pasta and vegetables together well. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper over all.
• Sprinkle in 1/4 – 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese and toss well. Remove from heat and keep covered.
• Place some of the ready-to-eat salad greens on a bowl, reserving the remainder of the greens in the fridge to use later this week.
• Cut the remaining half of the cucumber left from Day 1’s meal into half lengthwise, then cut each half in half again lengthwise. Cut cucumber quarters into 1/2-inch pieces by cutting them crosswise. Add to the salad greens and toss with your favorite salad dressing.
To serve, transfer the Farm-fresh Pasta Primavera to a serving plate and top with additional grated parmesan cheese.
Go to Margie’s Easy Meals, “Week 20 Easy Meals Plan & Grocery List,” for Day 3’s easy meal, Bavarian-style Pork Chops with Noodles and Sautéed Spinach. To receive e-mail alerts for new articles from the San Jose Easy Meals Examiner, click on the Subscribe button above.