I have to admit, sometimes I just want to take the easy way out, head back to the college years when you could throw on some pasta and toss it with jarred red sauce and have myself a satisfying meal. Well, it still pays to have some high quality, sugar-less jarred sauce in the cabinet for those days where you don’t feel like cooking or ordering in. Seriously, you have to really watch the sugar in your jarred sauce, try for something organic with very few ingredients–if you read the label you’ll be shocked–so pay a few bucks extra and start with something very good.
Of course, now I like to spruce up my sauce a little bit and I was on a spice kick this past week (My husband pointed this out!). I picked some tomatoes in the garden and accidentally clipped a green one but didn’t feel like making friend green tomatoes. (I’d make them similarly to the way I fry the zucchini flowers.) So I chopped it up–the texture was crunchy, not unlike a cucumber crunch, and it tasted mild so I decided to add that to the dish for texture. And from the farmer’s market I bought some Thai green curry. I know, it sounds a little gross to add curry to your pasta, but this curry had cilantro, basil, garlic and things that I was convinced would compliment the dish and give it a little heat with just a spoonful.
While the gluten-free corn pasta was boiling, I also decided to saute some of the zucchini flowers to put on top for a nice garnish. I didn’t get them as crunchy as I would have liked (I was looking to infuse more texture in the dish) but they were tasty and added the nice bit of color I was looking for. I headed the jarred sauce with the infusion of curry after taking the flowers out of the pan. Then instead of draining the pasta and tossing the sauce in, I added the pasta in bit by bit (the spoon had holes to drain the water) so that the pasta would be totally covered. For the finish, I put the flowers on top along with some salt and fresh pepper. You could add fresh grated parmesan cheese too if you like.
The result was an easy and quick meal with a little kick and something that I could definitely eat the night before a race with a small piece of protein. Adding things to your jarred sauce will “wake” it up and turn your old college meal into a gourmet one. Enjoy!