Monday, May 21, 2012

Pasta with Zucchini, Fennel & White Beans

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I've been meaning to try cooking with fennel for a long time now.  I'm not a huge black licorice fan (and that's what fennel smells like to me), but it's in so many recipes I figured it just has to be good, right?
Right.  Now, I'm not sure I'd like it full force and eat it raw, but becomes much more mild in flavor.  This dish is super easy to make and is surprisingly packed with flavor (which you wouldn't think if you looked at the ingredients.)  Don't skimp out on the mint...really adds a nice touch.  Great weeknight meal!

  • 1 large fennel bulb, trimmed
  • 2 medium zucchini
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 ounces (2 cups) whole-wheat penne or similar short pasta, reserve 1/2 cup cooking liquid
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 plum tomatoes, diced
  • 3/4 cup crumbled goat cheese or feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste


  • Preheat oven to 400°F.

  • Cut fennel bulb in half lengthwise and then slice lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick wedges. Quarter zucchini lengthwise. Toss the fennel and zucchini with 1 tablespoon oil and salt. Arrange in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Roast, turning once, until soft and beginning to brown, about 20 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta; cook until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions.

  • While the pasta is cooking, Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Remove from the heat.

  • When the vegetables are cool enough to handle, coarsely chop. Add the vegetables, beans and 1/2 cup pasta liquid to the pan with the garlic and place over medium-low heat. Drain the pasta and immediately add it to the pan. Toss thoroughly and add tomatoes; toss until just warm. Remove from the heat and stir in cheese and mint. Season with pepper.
  • recipe adapted from Eating Well


    Healthy Recipes said...

    After reading your post, i am slightly hungry !

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