Zesty Zucchini, Basil, and Ricotta Mezzi Rigatoni
Serves 4 people
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 bunch of scallions, finely sliced
2 shallots halved, thinly sliced
1/2 serrano chili, diced (optional)
1 lb mezzi rigatoni dried pasta
2 zucchini, sliced into very thin rounds
2 lemons, zested and juiced
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup fresh ricotta
1/2 cup pecorino romano grated cheese
bunch of basil, thinly sliced for finishing (mint is a great substitute)
Cook pasta in a large pot of generously salted boiling water until al dente. Reserve 1 1/2 cups pasta water: drain pasta.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil, scallion, shallots, and serrano: cook until softened, about 30 to 60 seconds. Add zucchini: stirring occasionally, until zucchini is tender, about 4 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. At this point, add lemon zest, juice, and butter. Add pasta, ricotta, and 1 cup of reserved pasta water. Stir until ricotta melts and liquid is reduced and slightly thickened, 1 to 2 minutes.
Remove from heat: stir in grated cheese. Add more pasta water if needed, a few tablespoons at a time. Divide pasta among individual bowls. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil, chopped basil, more pecorino, and lemon zest.
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