Pasta with Artichokes and Oven Roasted Onions and Zucchini
I don't know why I never thought of this myself. In retrospect, it seems so obvious. Roasting vegetables intensified flavors, caramelizes sugars and just generally takes things (things like onions and zucchini, say) to a higher level. When you toss oven roasted sliced onions with similarly oven roasted ribbons of zucchini, add to them some pasta and a few artichoke hearts, and then top with shaved parmesan, you've assembled something wonderful.
The best part is that all of that roasted flavor occurs with almost no effort on your part. No standing over a hot stove stirring sauce, no sautéing vegetables, even. Just preheat your oven (or better in the summer, your toaster oven) and walk away. Some of my favorite summer cooking is done by proxy.
Pasta Zucchini, Artichokes and Capers
Only every so slightly adopted from Angela Tunner's Simply Summer
1 small red onion, peeled and sliced
3 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 pound dried pasta (I used penne)
1, 13 oz jar artichoke hearts, drained
2 tablespoons capers
Shaved Parmesan cheese
Pepper, to taste
Preheat either your oven or your toaster oven to 375 F. With a vegetable peeler, peel the zucchini. Once the peel is removed, continue to peeling so that you have long ribbons of zucchini. Toss the onion and the zucchini with the oil and the salt and place on a piece of foil, then into the preheated oven. If you use your toaster over, you'll have to do this in batches, but it should all fit at once in your regular oven. Roast the vegetables for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Bring your water for the pasta to a boil and add the pasta. Cook according to package directions based on what kind of pasta you're using. In the meantime, drain the artichokes and put them in a large(ish) bowl. Add the roasted vegetables to the bowl and toss. When the pasta is finished, remove it from the heat, drain, and add it to the vegetables in the bowl. Add more salt if needed, and the pepper to taste.
Plate the pasta onto individual dishes and top with the cheese and the capers. Enjoy!