Pasta Primavera

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This dish is perfect because it combines two things I love: pasta and vegetables! It’s versatile as well; I am using peppers, zucchini, and yellow squash, but I have seen other recipes that include onion, carrots, and peas. Using Italian seasoning as the major flavor component makes this dish simple and keeps the ingredient list down too. Italian seasoning contains marjoram, thyme, rosemary, sage, oregano, and basil, which is a lot of bang for your buck! Then the little bit of red pepper flake gives the dish a bit of spice, which I absolutely love.

It’s also great because it is quick and easy to make during the week. It becomes even quicker when you get really comfortable chopping and completing prep fast. So I thought I would focus a little bit on that in this post and try to help you get through chopping as quickly and efficiently as possible! 

Ingredients:
1 red bell pepper, 1 ½ inch dice
1 green bell pepper, 1 ½ inch dice
1 zucchini, 1 ½ inch dice
1 yellow squash, 1 ½ inch dice
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp salt
Pepper
12 oz box Rotini (or favorite pasta)
Grated parmesan cheese for serving

First thing we have to do is dice the vegetables. I did a large dice on the veggies because when they roast they will shrink in size significantly. It’s also important to try to keep the pieces of vegetables the same size so that they will cook uniformly. If you feel confident in your chopping abilities please feel free to scroll through the vegetable shots. I just wanted to describe in detail how I find it easiest to complete the prep work.

To dice the zucchini chop off both ends and cut the zucchini in half.

imageThen stand up the halves and half them lengthwise

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imageSlice the zucchini in half again…lengthwise.  Then make several cuts 1 1/2 inches apart through the zucchini to make the final dice.

imageI threw my completed veggies on a baking sheet while I was chopping the rest to avoid having to clean a bowl :)  I then chopped the yellow squash the same way.

For the peppers, cut the top off.

imageDon’t waste the top piece, be sure to chop that up, just make sure you don’t include any stem in there.

Now the trick with this next step is that we are trying to get all the seeds out at once and not make a total mess with them.  So what I do is slice through the 4 membranes of the pepper (basically trying to detach the middle segment from the sides of the pepper).  Then I grab out the middle piece and it should be perfect!

imageimageimageAnd omg it was, not one seed in there.  But if you do get some seeds, don’t be sad, just tap them out over a sink or trashcan.  Then I pull at the white membrane pieces on the side to get them outa there too.imageNow, back to dicing.  Cut the pepper in half through the center.imageimageStand up each half and chop out the bottom by cutting two slices that meet in a triangle.imageimageimageSlice 1 1/2 wide slices through the pepper.  If you wanted to make a really fine dice, you would make the cuts much closer together at this step, but don’t, because that’s not what we are doing here!imageimageTurn the cutting board the other way and chop through the peppers making 1 1/2 wide cuts and your dice is done!  Cut the green pepper the same way.imageimageOnce all the veggies are chopped and on the baking sheet add the oil, Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper and toss the veggies around so they are fully coated with the oil and seasoning.imageimageBe sure to arrange the veggies in a single layer to ensure they cook evenly.  imagePlace in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.  These veggies are perfect as a side dish just like this…but obviously I need to add carbs.imageSo cook the pasta in salted boiling water according to the package (begin this step once the veggies are in the oven, this will help you complete the meal all at once).  Drain the pasta and pour into a serving bowl.imageScrape the veggies and oil into the bowl with the pasta.  Try and get as much oil as you can because that is basically the sauce…and there will probably be a lot of seasoning on the pan as well.  Toss to combine and serve with some grated parmesan.image

I also baked up some chicken to add to my pasta because Scott probably wouldn’t be too pumped if we just have pasta and veggies for dinner.  I seasoned the chicken with the same ingredients I put on the veggies and it was delicious.

Printable recipe
Pasta Primavera

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