This simple, fresh-flavoured pasta makes a fantastic weeknight dinner and is equally good for a Sunday afternoon picnic. Use female zucchini flowers, which have small zucchini attached to them instead of stems.
- 150 ml extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 Spanish onion, thinly sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 long red chilli, thinly sliced
- 16 zucchini flowers, zucchini removed from flowers and halved lengthways (see note)
- 400 gm dried fusilli
- Finely grated rind and juice of 2 lemons
- 50 gm ricotta salata, crumbled
- To serve: basil leaves
- 1Heat oil in a large frying pan over high heat, add onion, garlic and chilli and sauté until tender (5-7 minutes). Add zucchini and sauté until tender (3-5 minutes), then set aside.
- 2Meanwhile, cook pasta in boiling salted water until al dente (7-10 minutes). Drain, reserving 50ml cooking water. Return pasta and reserved cooking water to pan, add zucchini flowers, lemon rind, juice, ricotta salata and zucchini mixture, season to taste, scatter with basil leaves and serve hot.
Note If zucchini flowers are unavailable, substitute thinly sliced small zucchini.