Gluten Free Pasta Primavera: The Meaning of Spring

Primavera literally translates to “The meaning of Spring.”  Bright, beautiful, and fresh, what could scream “SPRING” louder?  ….the Peepers, of course!  We combined the two, added a little background blues music to help the Peepers along, sat under the full starlit sky and dined on Pasta Primavera.  There was a shooting star to match a bottle of Alasia Moscato D’Asti, which tastes like sparkles and honey and perfectly finished off the freshness with more freshness.

That said, I know these blogs make it seem like life is perfect, but the reality is that things don’t always work out the way they should.  The timing of dinner and who dinner was being prepared for didn’t match up, I got all grumpy, then kind of apathetic and then got over it and had to reheat cold Primavera. There. That’s the truth. Sometimes we don’t communicate well, promptness is an issue, and I’m going to stop here. 🙂

It was a beautiful night and all is forgiven.

Look at these vegetables.

A fresh medley of colorful vegetables is what you want. I chose sugar snap peas, yellow squash, petite carrots, cauliflower, onions, and cherry tomatoes for a burst of color and flavor.  Cherry tomatoes do the job better than slicing big tomatoes. Bell peppers come in red, green, yellow and orange.  You can use asparagus, mushrooms, eggplant – the list is endless – and make sure you have more than enough vegetables.  They’ll cook down and you want this to be more vegetables than pasta.  If you use big carrots, cut them in matchstick sizes along with the peppers and squash, like this: 

Once you have the vegetables cut into matchsticks or sliced in big chunks you will place them on a roasting pan (you may need two pans) and drizzle extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, and Herbs de Provence over them.  Herbs de Provence can be purchased already prepared but it is simply a combination of  dried herbs commonly used in Provence: lavender, fennel, thyme, savory, sage, basil (but the list can be bigger).  I used a mortar and pestle to grind the lavender and fennel first.Herbs de Provence

Lavender and Fennel Seed

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.  Place the vegetable pans in the oven and cook for about 10 minutes. Stir. Then cook another 10 minutes or so until the vegetables are softened, golden, and roasted.

Meantime, place a large pot of cold water on the stove, add a few tablespoons of Kosher salt and bring to a boil.  Add 1 pound of good quality gluten free pasta like bow ties or penne and cook as directed until al dente (to the tooth).  Save about 1 cup of the pasta water when you drain the pasta in case you need to add more moisture to the pasta and vegetables.  Toss the vegetables, pasta and about 1/2 a cup of water. Top with Parmesan cheese, serve in bowls and dive in!

Best eaten sitting under the stars on a warm Spring night.

You’ll notice I didn’t offer exact amounts of ingredients.  All I did was go crazy in the produce department, picking out pretty colors and shapes.  It goes without saying that the best ingredients make the best meal.  Olive oil, Parmesan cheese, salt, freshly ground pepper and your choice in pasta will make this what you want it to be: Your own Primavera, meaning of Spring.  Happy Eating!

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