A Nice, Light, Summer-y Dinner

Sometimes, it’s too hot outside for a really heavy meal.
Sometimes, I’ve just found a new (to me, at least) shape of pasta that I don’t want to drown in a meat or cream sauce.

Look how pretty summer veggies can be. They’re so nice, they get bowties!

Mini farfalles! If there’s anything better than bowtie pasta, it’s tiny bowtie pasta. Even better? Mini bowties with colorful summer veggies.

The Recipe:
Summer Veggies with Vinaigrette-Tossed Mini Bowties

1 red pepper
1 orange pepper
1 small zucchini
1 small yellow squash
olive oil
balsamic vinegar
garlic powder
Italian seasoning mix (basil, oregano, etc)
fresh ground pepper

Do This
Start two pots of boiling water – one about halfway full and the other about an inch full. The first one is for pasta and the second is for steaming. Hooray, multitasking!
Chop the veggies into bite-sized pieces. One-inch squares for the peppers and quarter-inch thick slices of the zucchini and squash should work just fine. if you’re feeling fancy, cut stripes into the zucchini.
Toss a few handfuls (or half a box, whatever) of mini bowtie pasta into the first pot and cook until juuust past al dente. While the pasta is cooking, place the veggies in a steamer basket in the second pot of boiling water, cover with a lid, and let them have some sauna time.
When the pasta is done cooking, drain the water off and place the little floppy bowties in a large bowl. Pour in a few glugs each of olive oil and balsamic vinegar (how much is up to you – I went with about a tablespoon and a half of each). Shake a little bit of garlic powder, Italian seasoning, and fresh ground pepper over the top, then toss the pasta until the spices and vinaigrette are evenly distributed.
Remove the veggies from the steamer, and spoon over a plate of the vinaigrette-tossed bowties.

You can serve the pasta warm or chilled – it’s great either way. I plan on making this in bulk and packing it into little containers for tasty at-work lunches.


6 Responses to “A Nice, Light, Summer-y Dinner”

  1. Jessica Says:

    Isn’t mini pasta soo cute? Lol.

  2. amberance Says:

    mmm, that sounds good. I think I’ll make this Saturday.

  3. Rebecca Says:

    I actually made this last night with whole wheat fusilli (the store was out of bowties), and it was delicious (although the WW pasta tends to be grainy and I think it would have been better with just flour noodles)! Very light and I loved how the veggies still had a nice bite to them, adding to the texture. I think tonight I’ll bake some chicken and add them to the leftover salad for a full meal. Thanks for the recipe idea!

  4. Pablo Says:

    So I have to cover the pot with the steaming basket?! No wonder it never worked for me!! HA!

  5. Jenny Says:


    Actually, some steaming will happen even if you don’t put the lid on, but it won’t be nearly as good as the sauna treatment.

  6. Jenny Says:

    Rebecca, I’m still trying to figure out a way to make whole wheat pasta not have an awkward, grainy texture. I suppose breaking down the grains to smooth it out would defeat the purpose of whole wheat, eh?

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