For the past two months, I have been in extensively researching into Italy. I am headed to Italy for the very first time this Thursday and as always I want to make the most of this trip. As, its high tourism season, we have decided to stay away from the typical locations. The only large city we are going to for a few days is Florence. Instead we are focusing on the beautiful and varied landscape of Italy. We will be hiking in the jagged dolomite mountains, experiencing lake life around Lake Como and Lake Garda, and finally the ancient rolling hills of Umbria, the agricultural heart of Italy. I am so excited for some of the experiences we have planned and some of the stories I hope to tell with this trip. I have always had a deep love for history. The study of cultural History was always my favorite and best subject in school. I cannot wait to experience the centuries of tradition and stories that echo through the narrow streets of Italy. Make sure you follow along on Instagram to see my adventures!
To celebrate this trip, I am sharing this simple pasta recipe made in the spirit of all that is so wonderful about food in Italy, where hyperlocal and seasonal isn’t an affectation, rather it has been for centuries just the way of life. This is the place where the ingredients are of such high quality that no embellishment is needed and true simplicity really rules. I made this pasta with heirloom Italian zucchinis, squash blossoms, and very special garlic flowers (my first time using them!) that I found at my local farmers market. Garlic flowers occur if you neglect to remove the scapes (flower bud) from the garlic plant. Those pearly little petals blushing the most perfect pink are actually tiny baby garlic gloves. They are deliciously garlicky but I think lacking in the sharpness of full grown garlic cloves. Generously tossed into this past, they are so so delicious and of course absolutely stunning. This recipe is really just a guide. The simple sauce of butter, starchy pasta water, cheese, and lemon juice would go well with whatever vegetables you can find. It is also the sort of sauce that you can take with you into the Autumn and Winter. Just customize with whatever you can find during those cooler months. I know I will be returning to this whenever I am in need of a quick but delicious dinner.