Pasta with Pesto, Corn and Zucchini

If you like pesto, you will enjoy this healthy pesto pasta salad that uses fresh, in-season local vegetables.

1 fresh garlic clove, peeled
¼ cup (4 tablespoons) toasted pine nuts or walnuts
1 cup packed, whole basil leaves
Juice from ¼ lemon
¼ cup (4 tablespoons) grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup (8 tablespoons), plus one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
½ pound whole wheat rigatoni, or other large pasta such as fusilli
1 large ear of fresh corn, husked
1 zucchini sliced diagonally, about ¼ inch thick
4-5 ounces goat cheese (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Pulse garlic, pine nuts/walnuts, basil, juice squeezed from ¼ lemon, and Parmesan cheese in food processor. Drizzle in ¼ cup olive oil until mixture forms a thick paste, and season with salt and pepper. Cut kernels from one large ear of fresh, husked corn and reserve. Place remaining cob in large pot of boiling water, add pasta, and cook until desired texture. Meanwhile, sauté zucchini and corn kernels in one tablespoon of olive oil until just soft. Remove pasta from water and reserve ½ cup of pasta water.

Return pasta to empty pot, add hot zucchini and corn mixture, pesto and enough of the reserved water to form a creamy sauce. Mix well and season with more salt and pepper, if needed.

Divide the pasta mixture between two plates, and place half of the goat cheese on top of each, along with a few small leaves of fresh basil.

Printable recipe available at:

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