Garden Bounty

I appreciate color in my artwork, and in my food.  Luckily, my husband is a gardener, and we have had a pretty good crop of veggies this year – despite the drought conditions in the middle of summer.  Our corn and green bean crops suffered the most, but the rest of the garden has done well.

This is a picture of what my husband picked for our supper table yesterday:

Those veggies are so pleasing to me.  The colors were rich and saturated, and I knew I was going to make something wonderful with them.

Growing up in an Italian-American home, I saw my Dad harvest plenty of  tomatoes, and lots, and lots, and lots of zucchini in the past.  My Mom always fried the zucchini, or hollowed out the big zucchini and stuffed it with a hamburger and sauce combination.  I never liked it fried, and am not a big red meat eater, so zucchini was never high on my “veggie I like to eat” radar, yet my husband planted it every year.

About 10 years ago I came up with this idea:

I make a marinara.  It’s ridiculously simple to make, but tastes heavenly.   It’s the fresh veggies that make this meal.  You can not beat home grown tomatoes, and you can not beat cherry tomatoes for their sweetness –  especially at the end of the growing season.  And the extra bonus?  Not only does it taste great, it’s oh so healthy for you.

Diane’s Garden Fresh Marinara Sauce

Extra virgin olive oil to cover the bottom of a 1 quart CorningWare flat bottomed dish – It’s really not a lot of oil, but adds a lot of taste.

1/8 tsp Spice Islands powdered garlic – it’s grown in the USA – check your bottle labels.  The garlic grown in China makes me sick as a dog.  I’d use a clove of fresh garlic if my husband would eat garlic, but he hates garlic.  He can’t see it in the meal when I use powdered garlic, and what he doesn’t know, what hurt him.  LOL

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

1 tsp sea salt

Half the big zucchini in the picture – sliced – skin and all – you can the size I cut the zucchini in the picture

1 quart cherry tomatoes, cut in half

Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

While the marinara is cooking, put some water in a pan, bring to a boil,  and make your whole wheat rotini.

Drain the rotini, and mix the marinara and pasta together.

Optional – 1 minute before you mix the marinara with your pasta, sprinkle  1/8 tsp of dried  basil into it, then combine the pasta and marinara.

Or if you’re lucky like me, cut some fresh basil from the garden and sprinkle it on top of your food after it has been plated.

Grate some fresh Parmesan cheese on top and mangia.



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