Zucchini with anchovy sauce

Don’t let the mention of anchovies scare you off. The small amount in this recipe adds a wonderful depth and umami flavor to the sauce. Serve on long pasta, spaghetti is ideal.

4-6 small zucchini or yellow summer squash, 6-8 inches long
4 flat anchovy fillets, chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled, 1 clove minced, 2 cloves sliced into thirds
½ c olive oil
1-28 oz can diced tomatoes, or canned whole tomatoes cut up, with juice
1 pound spaghetti
Parmesan or Romano cheese

Serves 4

Cut the stem off the squash and then cut each crosswise into 3 pieces. Stand each piece on end and make 2 vertical cuts to give you 4 wedges. Put into a colander, sprinkle with 2 tsp salt, and mix. Set aside for at least an hour.

Put minced garlic in a 2 qt saucepan with 3 TB of the oil. Heat over medium until the garlic is sizzling, then remove from heat. Let the pan cool down to almost room temperature. Put back on the burner at its lowest setting, add the anchovies, and stir/mash with a wooden spoon until the anchovies are reduced to a paste. Add the tomatoes/juice, a few grindings of pepper, and bring to a gentle simmer. Let simmer, partly covered, for 20-30 min until slightly reduced. The sauce may be done ahead of time. Correct salt if needed.

Put a large pan of water on the stove to heat (for the pasta).

While the sauce is cooking, quickly rinse the squash to remove excess salt, drain, and spread on paper towels. Pat with more towels to remove excess moisture. Heat (medium heat) the remaining oil in a non-stick skillet large enough to hold the squash in 1 layer (or use 2 skillets if necessary). Add the sliced garlic and sizzle until browned, a few minutes. Remove and discard the garlic–the idea is to flavor the oil. Add the squash and cook, turning once or twice, until lightly browned and crisp-tender. Turn off heat and leave squash in pan (but don’t let it overcook).

Cook the pasta until al dente and drain. If necessary, reheat the sauce. Put the pasta in the pan with the sauce and mix well. To serve, put ¼ of the pasta on each plate and top with ¼ of the zucchini. Serve with freshly grated cheese.

Explore posts in the same categories: Pasta, Vegetables/potatoes/rice

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