Capellini in a Spicy Zucchini Tomato Sauce

Oh man it’s great to be back on the blog! So much to say, and yet I have to keep reminding myself that I don’t have to say it all in a single post. A lot has changed since my last post including my getting a new job and our buying a new house last October.

I’m still trying to eat healthy even though I gave up the vegetarian thing over a year ago, and I’m not cooking as elaborately as I used to but I want to change that and start exploring some food again. I’m so excited!

I wanted to start with something simple to get back into the flow and rhythm of the cooking, food photography, and writing combo, so I decided to go with what I’m typically good at: a simple pasta dish. This pasta and vegetables dish is from Food Network Kitchens.

I have to be honest, I was a little skeptical about how good this was going to be while I was making it because it wasn’t calling for a list of spices. The sauce was stewing in just a little sauteed garlic and red chili flakes. This dish leaned heavily on the simple, natural flavors of the tomatoes and vegetables which gave it more character than I had anticipated. I took a few test-taste bites before adding Parmesan cheese and fresh basil. The tomato sauce had a nice sweet-tart taste from the tomatoes and finished with just a little heat from the red chili flakes. It wasn’t overwhelming, but it didn’t let you forget it was in there. Me – I like just a little kick, just enough heat to enhance the flavor and experience of a eating a dish.  The vegetables and pasta were perfect vehicles for Parmesan cheese and fresh basil, and a little salt and pepper goes a long way as well.

It’s great to be back blogging, and I hope you have fun with this one!

RecipeCourtesy of Food Network Kitchens

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 28 -ounce can whole San Marzano tomatoes
Kosher salt
1 medium zucchini, cut into small chunks
1/2 pound capellini
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
Grated parmesan cheese, for topping


Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until the garlic is just golden, about 1 minute. Crush the tomatoes into the skillet with your hands and add the juice. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 15 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the capellini and cook as the label directs. Drain and add to the sauce along with the basil; toss to coat. Top with parmesan.

1 Comment

  1. I'm so happy to see you back! Congrats on the new job and house. Hopefully everything is going extremely well for you.

    This pasta looks delicious. The red pepper flakes are enticing and the cheese on top is a bonus!

Comments are closed.