Wrap up the last of summer's harvest with colorful ribbons of orange, green, yellow and red. Abundant zucchini, summer squash and carrots can be woven together with fettuccine pasta for a tasty supper your family will enjoy from preparation to the last bite.
Hand each of your preteen kids their own vegetable peeler, give them a few tips for honing ribbon-making skills, and they'll keep busy and feel useful cutting vegetables while you cook up the pasta. A healthy supper will be ready in minutes.
8 ounces fettuccine pasta, cooked, drained and rinsed in cool water.
1 to 2 small-size green zucchini
1 yellow summer squash
2 medium-size carrots
1/2 fresh red pepper (optional)
1/2 cup of your favorite vinaigrette-style salad dressing or traditional vinaigrette (see recipe below)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Chopped parsley or basil
1. Trim off the ends of the zucchini, squash and carrots. Use a vegetable peeler to cut the vegetables lengthwise into long, thin, ribbonlike strips. When you reach the inner seeds of the zucchini and summer squash, stop and continue slicing the other side. Discard the centers. Place all the vegetable ribbons into a large bowl.
2. Trim off the green ends of the scallion. Tear them into thin long strips with your fingers. Add to the vegetables.
3. Add pasta and toss lightly with your favorite vinaigrette dressing or prepare the basic recipe below. Cut thin slices of the red pepper and arrange on top, if you wish. Top with grated Parmesan and parsley or basil. Serve with French bread. Serves 4 to 6.
TIP: If your kids love apples, add one to the salad for sweetness. Peel, core and cut an apple into 4 slices. Peel strips from each slice and add to the vegetable ribbons.
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup white wine or sherry vinegar
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
In a small bowl, let one child whisk the salt, mustard and vinegar together. While whisking, another child may slowly add the oil in a stream until the mixture is well-combined. Makes 1 cup. Store covered at room temperature for a week or in the refrigerator for a month.