1 pound penne or ziti rigate
2 cups ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano cheese
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium zucchini, diced
A generous handful of fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
A generous handful of fresh mint leaves, slivered
Coarse black pepper
20 fresh basil leaves, shredded or torn
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the pasta and salt the water. Cook the pasta al dente, with a bite to it.
Place the ricotta, butter, and Parmigiano or Romano in a large bowl.
Heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add the EVOO and onions, garlic, and zucchini, and cook for 7 to 8 minutes. Add the parsley and mint and cook for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat.
Drain the pasta. Add to the bowl with the cheeses. Toss to melt the butter and evenly coat the pasta with cheeses, then season with salt and pepper. Top the pasta with the onions, zucchini and basil. Season with a little salt. Toss and serve at the table.
I didn't make this variation on the ricotta pasta. This was my first travel day, so we were driving in our new van from Alabama to Illinois. We stopped just north of Champagne for the night, so it was a long day. We drove 15 hours. We ate a buffet for dinner at a restaurant called Apple Barrel. I was hoping to get something with apples in it, but no such luck :) I have made this pasta recipe before and it was not bad. Zucchini and mint go well together.