With roots stretching back to Nerano, Italy, this classic pasta dish uses fresh zucchini as a base for a creamy, earthy sauce. The Spaghetti alla Nerano (Spaghetti with Zucchini) dish proves that simple, fresh ingredients make the most exquisite entrees in Italian cuisine.
- SERVES: 6-8
- LEVEL: Super Simple
- Heat the oil in a wide skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic clove and sauté until the garlic is golden. Remove the garlic and add the zucchini rounds., Cook zucchini until tender but not brown. As they finish cooking, lay the zucchini slices on paper towels to absorb the excess oil. Sprinkle lightly with salt.
- In a food processor or blender, blend together 1/3 of the zucchini and 1/4 cup pasta water. Pour the puree into a large serving bowl.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente (see package instructions for details). Drain, reserving 1 cup of hot pasta water.
- Add the spaghetti, zucchini rounds and hot pasta water to the puree. Mix everything together vigorously for a minute or two.
- Then add the grated cheese and continue mixing until the cheese has completely melted into a creamy sauce, adding more pasta water if needed.
- Top with basil and serve.