Tonight we whipped together this quick pasta dish using zucchini and tomatoes to create a fresh sauce bursting with flavor. The roasted sunflower seeds add a nice contrasting crunchiness to the dish and the cayenne pepper brings the heat. This recipe serves 2.
- 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 zucchini
- 400g cherry tomatoes (about 2 cups)
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 250g pasta of choice, I used spelt spaghetti
- Roast sunflower seeds in a pan over low heat until they turn golden brown in color. Stir every few minutes to prevent burning. While the sunflower seeds are roasting, chop your zucchini into quarter slices.
- Then add olive oil to a dutch oven or large pan. Increase heat to medium and add chopped zucchini. Sauté zucchini, stirring frequently, until soft and beginning to brown, about 7 minutes.
- Next, reduce heat to low and add the tomatoes to the dutch oven. I left mine whole, but if your tomatoes are larger, you may want to slice them into halves.
- Now grate the garlic on a microplane grater and add it to the mixture along with the cayenne pepper, salt, and ground pepper. Stir to combine the mixture and cook for about 10 minutes, or until the tomatoes begin to blister and start breaking down.
- While you sauce is cooking, bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook your preferred pasta. Drain the pasta when it has finished cooking, reserving half a cup of pasta water.
- Now we’re going to assemble the dish. Add the drained pasta, reserved pasta water, and about 2/3 of the roasted sunflower seeds to your sauce in the dutch oven. Stir to incorporate over low heat and coat pasta with the sauce.
- Finally, remove from heat and serve the dish topped with a sprinkle of the remaining sunflower seeds.