Summer Pasta

A few years ago Zach and I were in a Borders and I picked up a clearance vegetarian cookbook. I used post-its to mark a bunch of different recipes that I wanted to try. So far I’ve only tried two of them, I think. But one of them is a staple meal for us in the summer months.

Summer Pasta

2 1/4 c. Dried penne
1 lb. plum tomatoes
10 oz. mozzarella, drained
1/4 c. olive oil
1 tbspbalsamic vinegar
grated zest and juice of one lemon
15 fresh basil leaves, shredded
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the pasta according to package directions until just tender. Quarter the tomatoes, and remove the seeds, then chop into small cubes. Slice the mozzarella into similar-size pieces. Mix together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, grated lemon zest, 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice, and the basil. Season with salt and pepper. Add the tomatoes and mozzarella and let stand until the pasta is cooked. Drain the pasta and toss with the tomato mixture. Serve immediately, garnished with fresh basil leaves.

You’ll see that in the pictures I added smoked salmon. I didn’t really like it that way, but if you’re a big salmon fan, go for it!

summer pasta

Note: If you think you will have leftovers then I suggest just added the cheese as you serve it… otherwise when you reheat the dish the cheese will melt, and you’ll lose some of the texture of the dish. You can used canned tomatoes, but buy good quality. Do not, however, think of using the pre-shredded mozzarella that comes in a bag.


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