After a summer full of fun treats, I'm trying to clean up my diet and lose the cocktails and cherry pie weight (again) before it's time to put away the flowy dresses for jeans. I love summer whole-heartedly, so the let down of covering up with sweaters and jeans is only exacerbated when those jeans are a little too snug. This meal made meeting that goal painless. It is simply a bowl full of vegetables at their absolute peak, enhanced by a touch of really good olive oil, fresh Parmesan Reggiano and fresh herbs. It was not at all hard to eat this for dinner, even when everyone else was enjoying this slow-roasted marinara over cheese ravioli.
The San Marzano tomatoes from my garden had just ripened at the same time. Perfect time for marinara. I cut each of them into six pieces and threw them in a bowl.
To the tomatoes I added a handful of freshly picked basil and a few sprigs of oregano, 2 chopped cloves of local garlic and 1 diced spring onion from my CSA, and added about 1 tsp. of sea salt and several grinds of fresh pepper. I tossed it all together with three healthy glugs of good olive oil (I'd guess it was 4 T.). Then I roasted it all on a parchment lined cookie sheet in a 350 oven for an hour and 20 min. After the pan cooled, I threw it all back in the bowl and blitzed it with an immersion blender until the large pieces were blended. You could easily accomplish something similar with a blender, food processor, or even a potato masher and some elbow grease.
Then we went to the pool where my girl did her first dive off the diving board!
We arrived home an hour late for dinner and very hungry. I quickly sautéed green and yellow summer squash in 1 T. of olive oil for 5 min., which I had spiralized a few days before. It holds up in the fridge incredibly well so I usually do 4-5 at once. I tossed a few ladles full of sauce onto the zoodles and cooked until the sauce was warmed through. A dusting of fresh Parmesan Reggiano on top and my dinner was ready. The sauce had an incredible depth of flavor and richness and the zucchini held up very well to it, with a hint of sweetness and crunch. My family and I sat there eating, smelling like chlorine and savoring the best of our garden. Summer perfection.