Our recent trip through Pennsylvania opened our eyes to many new things. First, New Jersey and Pennsylvania are much prettier than we thought. Second, Pittsburgh is not the “dirty steel town” I expected it to be. And finally, no matter where you go, farmer’s markets are still the best place to buy your food. The most prized stop at the Pittsburgh farmer’s market was Olio Fresca which sold all sorts of flavor-infused pasta that we could sample (uncooked). The flavors in the pasta were surprisingly strong, and the guy told us that the flavor doesn’t go away when you cook it; We’ll see about that pasta-man. To my surprise and delight, he was correct. It made for one of the simplest and best homemade meals we’ve had in a while. And that’s cottage cheese I put on top, not ricotta – don’t give me that face, you won’t notice the difference. At least I didn’t add peanut butter.
1/4 lb spicy linguine (or any other pasta), cooked al dente
1 green squash (zucchini), chopped
1 yellow squash, chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch chives, chopped (optional)
1 can chickpeas, drained (optional)
1t crushed red pepper flakes
1T dried italian seasoning
1T olive oil
splash of red wine (around 2-3T)
kosher salt and pepper, to taste
fresh grated pecorino romano
whipped cottage cheese (Friendship brand)
1. Saute the squash in a large skillet with 1t olive oil. Cook until the squash is tender (about 5 minutes), then place aside. Now add the garlic to the skillet with 1t olive oil and saute for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, red pepper flakes, italian seasoning, salt, pepper and wine. Cook for about 2-3 minutes, or until tomatoes are tender.
2. Add the squash back into the skillet along with the chives and chickpeas, if using. Simmer for 4-5 minutes to let the flavors combine.
3. Spoon the sauce over the cooked pasta, top with dollops of cottage cheese and grated pecorino romano.