Sometimes we think of pasta dishes as loaded with cheese and weighed down with sauce. I often like to use pasta as a way to sneak in healthy veggies, so you feel like you’re having comfort food, but you’re also getting bites filled with vitamins. Especially in summer, I like to load up on whatever freshest vegetables I can get my hands on. Today I had organic broccoli, and zucchini on hand, as well as my new favorite – bok choy. Bok choy is flavorful and adds intrigue to any dish. The medley creates an appealing palate of greens, that is appetizing and refreshing. But this recipe is flexible – you can your favorite vegetables. To satisfy the cheese lovers (me), I added a dash of grated Parmigiano Reggiano, which rounded out the dish yet still kept it light.
- 1 lb pasta (1 regular box)
- 1 bunch broccoli, cut into bite size florets
- 1 bunch bok choy, toughly chopped
- 2 small zucchini, sliced into 1⁄2 inch half-moons
- 2 tbsp olive oil + 4 tbsp olive oil or butter
- 1⁄2 tsp salt
- 1⁄2 tsp pepper
- 1⁄2 tsp garlic powder
- 1⁄2 tsp dried oregano
- 1⁄2 tsp dried thyme
- 1⁄2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1⁄2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
Heat olive oil in a large skillet and add the vegetables, salt and pepper. Sauté until soft about 12 minutes. Add the garlic powder, thyme, oregano and red chili flakes if using, and cook for another 2 minutes.
Heat the remaining 4 tbsp olive oil or butter in a small skillet, and add the garlic. Sauté on low until fragrant, about 1 minute. Set aside.
While the vegetables are cooking, prepare the pasta according to the package’s instructions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup pasta liquid. Return to pot, mix in the garlic sauce and sautéed vegetables, slowly adding the pasta liquid as needed.
Serve with additional grated Parmigiano Reggiano and freshly ground pepper if desired.