My mamma says you can’t please everyone but I sure do try.
Well, I try when it comes to the kitchen. That skinny sliver of our apartment can either be a war zone or place of contentment and love. Basically, it comes down to whether I include bacon in the recipe.
So I caved.
When I set out to create the perfect summer pasta– a catch-all for the beautiful, smack-dab-in-season zucchini, squash, tomatoes and sweet basil that I fawn over every week at the market–I decided to include crackly bits of pig (a favorite of Parker Lee’s 2 year-old taste buds as well). Once the bacon is cooked, garlic sizzles in the rendered fat and then a pile of freshly chopped veggies are sautéed in the same skillet until tender. Mix in a few spoonfuls of salty pecorino and you have a savory, easy summer dinner.
*If you’re pig-averse (or just trying to be squeeze in your skinny jeans), substitute olive oil for the bacon fat. But oh those smoky piggy bits are gooooood…
Summer Vegetable Farfalle (Butterflies)
- 12 oz farfalle pasta
- 5 oz (1/3rd lb or 5 slices) bacon
- 2 ears fresh corn, shucked, silk hairs removed, shaved from the cob
- 4 cloves garlic, skins removed, smashed
- 1 medium zucchini, diced
- 1 medium squash, diced
- 2 small tomatoes, seeds scooped out, diced
- 1 handful fresh basil
- 3 tablespoons pecorino or parmesan
- Extra virgin olive oil as needed
- Kosher salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Bring a large (3 quart) pot of water to a boil and salt. Add pasta and stir.
While pasta is cooking, heat a medium-sized non-stick or cast iron skillet over high heat. Reduce to low heat and add bacon. (Remember, once the skillet is hot, the key to bacon is “slow and low.“) Cook bacon and remove to a rack or paper towel-lined plate. Pour off majority of bacon grease, leaving just enough to coat bottom of pan.
Add garlic cloves and cook until aromatic. Continue by adding corn kernels, zucchini and squash. Season with kosher salt and pepper, give the mixture a “turn” of olive oil (about 2 teaspoons) and adjust heat to medium. When the veggies begin to soften, add the tomatoes. Let veggies simmer until soft.
Remove pan from heat.
Drain pasta in a colander and return to pot. Fold cooked veggies into cooked pasta and finish with pecorino and basil.