Here’s a recipe for Pasta Salad with Heirloom Tomatoes, Zucchini, Fresh Corn and Goat-Milk Feta from Journal News contributor Viviane Bauquet Farre. You can peruse her blog at foodandstyle.com.
Photo by Viviane Bauquet Farre.
Did you know? This cold pasta is a summer festival in a bowl: delicious, crunchy sweet corn, earthy pan-roasted zucchini, refreshing fresh herbs, salty feta cheese — and most of all, the flavorful heirlooms. The Black Russian, Pruden’s Purple or any red heirloom beefsteak tomatoes will be marvelous in this dish.
The recipe, after the jump.
Pasta Salad with Heirloom Tomatoes, Zucchini, Fresh Corn and Goat-Milk Feta
Prep time 45 minutes
Total time 1 1/4 hours
For the zucchini
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 baby zucchini (about 6 inches long), ends trimmed and cut in 1/2-inch dice
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
For the pasta
2 ears fresh corn, husks removed
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed (use microplane grater)
1 1/4 teaspoons sea salt or to taste
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 teaspoons aged balsamic vinegar
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 pounds red, purple or black heirloom tomatoes, seeded and cut in 1/2-inch dices
1 bunch chives, cut in 1/4-inch slices (use kitchen scissors)
24 large basil leaves, torn in 1-inch pieces
1 pound mezzi rigatoni, penne rigate, ziti or ditali pasta
1 tablespoon sea salt for the pasta water
7 ounces goat milk feta cheese, crumbled as garnish
Small basil leaves as garnish
Heat a wide skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and zucchini. Sauté for 7 to 8 minutes, until golden-brown, tossing only occasionally. Sprinkle with the salt. Toss again and transfer to a bowl to cool. Set aside.
Fill a medium pot with water and bring to a boil. Add the corn and boil for 3 minutes.
Remove from pot and transfer to a bowl filled with cold water. As soon as the corn has cooled, transfer to clean kitchen towel and pat dry. Using a sharp knife, shave the kernels from the corn. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the garlic, salt, pepper, balsamic vinegar and oil. Whisk until well blended. Add the corn, tomatoes, chives and basil. Toss until well mixed and set aside.
Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil. When the water is boiling, add 1 tablespoon of salt and the pasta. Cook pasta according to package instructions, except al dente, about 1 minute less than what package calls for. Drain and rinse with cold water until cooled. Shake off the excess water. Add to the tomato mixture. Mix well and let stand at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes.
Add the pan-roasted zucchini to the pasta and stir well. Spoon pasta into individual bowl or a large serving platter. Crumble the feta on top and garnish with small basil leaves. Drizzle with a little more olive oil. Finish with freshly ground black pepper and serve.
Serves 4 to 6.
Tip Since the pasta has to stand at room temperature for at least 15 minutes (preferably 30) for all the flavors to mingle, the pasta will absorb more liquid and have a tendency to lose its al dente-ness. Undercooking the pasta by one minute will guarantee yours stays toothy.