Hello dear reader, get ready. It’s story tiiiiime!
My posts are usually pretty straight forward, I either go straight into explaining the recipe or if I’m feeling inspired, I waste a few paragraphs talking about random stuff, which usually drips with sarcasm (please sense the sarcasm!!) and probably annoy the heck out of you. This time around though I have an actual wholesome story about how this recipe came to be and I’m sharing it. I know how people loooove to read those, so you’re welcome!
Once upon a time, I was spending a semester in Germany and my friend, in Spain. Christmas was fast approaching and we were both familyless for the holidays – a very sad predicament for two Christmas lovers. Well, at least we had each other and decided to obviously celebrate together but where? We only had an entire new continent as an option! And a student budget, so not that many options after all, but we had big dreams! Enter the Italian guy.
My friend had a boyfriend back home, but that did not stop us from taking advantage of the kind Italian boy who had a crush on her and so nicely offered her a place to stay in London whenever she wanted. I mean, did you her that? London? For Christmas?? Sounds like a dream to me! He was flying home to Italy to be with his family, which meant we would have his entire messy boy apartment to ourselves! Still sounds good to me.
So we fly to London for only a few euros (thanks Ryan Air) and a carry-on, we get to his apartment and before he catches his flight, he cooks us dinner. An Italian cooking us dinner? This story just keeps getting better and better to me, the tag-along and annoying friend who is just there to ruin the mood – just kidding, there was no mood, she made it very clear she was not interested, but for the sake of this story let’s stick with that rather juicy narrative, shall we. He cooked us pasta, and come on. Italians are born knowing how to make good pasta, I swear to you. It took him half and hour and a glass of wine, and suddenly we were eating this amazing creamy lemony zucchini pasta. He gave us the recipe, and although this one is probably not as good as his, it’s a dish I’ve been making ever since. It’s a perfect weeknight dinner: it’s got veggies, so it’s healthy, you get the sauce done as the pasta is cooking, and it’s so easily customizable, you’ll soon realize you barely need a recipe.
So to the Italian guy I never saw again, thank you so much for the place and the food. Who knew, you’re still an inspiration.
Creamy Zucchini Pasta
- 2 zucchini
- 1 small onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 7 oz pasta (linguini, spaghetti, or pappardelle)
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 lemon
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- fresh basil
- salt and pepper
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to package instructions.
- Meanwhile, trim the zucchini and grate on the large holes of a box grater. Chop the onion and the garlic.
- Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for another minute. Add zucchini and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until zucchini is caramelized and golden brown, 8-10 minutes.
- Add heavy cream and stir to combine. Add some of the pasta cooking liquid as needed, to form a creamy sauce.
- Transfer pasta to zucchini. Add lemon juice and parmesan cheese. Taste and season with more salt and pepper.
- Serve pasta topped with more grated Parmesan and fresh basil.
Tips & Tricks: If you don’t have zucchini, you can use summer squash or a mixture of both.
If you make this Creamy Zucchini Pasta please be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! I’d love to hear from you and I love responding to each and every comment. And if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to also tag me on Instagram! I’d love to see your photos 🙂