I’ve always wanted to have an awesome garden. I’ve tried many times, but to no avail. Plants would die, pests would snack, weeds would flourish, and I would feel like a lot of time and money had been wasted.
I almost didn’t try again this year. I didn’t start any seedlings and I didn’t plan for the garden at all. I had plenty to do with the kids around here, so I didn’t put much more thought into it. But a garden fell into my lap anyway.
I went to the Los Ranchos farmer’s market and ran into a local farmer who was giving away tomato plants – fifteen tomato plants! Okay fine. I mean, who can actually turn down free, healthy tomato plants from a generous farmer and still sleep at night? And since I had just suddenly resigned myself to one more try at a garden, I bought a few other plants just for good measure before I left the market.
You probably already figured it out, but this story has a happy ending. Our garden, for the first time ever, has been incredible. No pests, no weeds, and everything is producing abundantly. I smile every time I see our big patch of green out the window.
Our garden has been the inspiration for most of our meals lately. It is so easy to eat simply and healthy with a treasure trove of fresh, flavorful ingredients just out the back door.
This Roasted Corn, Zucchini, Tomato Pasta really lets all the flavors of the fresh vegetables shine through. We’ve been eating it once or twice a week and no one is getting tired of it yet – which is a good thing because we’ve got zucchini and tomatoes growing out our ears here!
- 2½ pounds zucchini, trimmed and cut into ½-inch pieces
- 2 pounds tomatoes (plum, roma, heirloom, and even cherry tomatoes work), cut into chunks
- 3 or 4 ears of fresh corn, roasted and cut off the cob (oven roasted or grilled)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 teaspoons coarse salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 lb whole wheat spaghetti, or pasta of choice
- ⅓ cup chopped fresh basil
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
- Heat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss zucchini, tomatoes, and garlic with 3 tablespoons of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread evenly on pan and roast until zucchini is lightly browned, about 25 to 30 minutes.
- Prepare pasta according to package directions. Reserve ½ cup of pasta cooking water before draining. Return drained pasta to cooking pot and toss with remaining olive oil.
- Pour reserved pasta water onto baking sheet with cooked vegetables. Scrape with a wooden spatula to loosen browned bits. Pour vegetables and juices into the cooked pasta. Stir in roasted corn, basil, and parmesan. Serve with additional parmesan as desired.