Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Vegetarian Pasta with Zucchini, Asparagus, and Snow Peas

Spring means more than greening-up outside—it’s time to green up your plate as well. No easier way to do it than with a bunch of fresh green vegetables. This simple pasta sauce isn’t very saucy because it’s more about the taste, texture, and, yes, freshness of the asparagus, snow peas, green onions, zucchini, and spinach. I cheated with some canned diced tomatoes, but you can make the dish even fresher by chopping up your own.

This light and flavorful vegetarian pasta dinner is done in less than 15 minutes. (Fresh cooks fast—don't overdo it.) So green and so good.

Good Green Stuff

Serves 4
  • 8 oz spaghetti
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 small zucchini, chopped
  • 6 oz asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 oz snow peas, trimmed and cut diagonally in half
  • 2 cups diced tomatoes
  • 2 tsp thinly sliced lemon zest, plus more for garnish
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 packed cups chopped spinach

Prepared Ingredients
  1. Cook the pasta in boiling, salted water 8-9 minutes. Drain.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a large, deep skillet over medium heat and add the oil. Add the garlic, onions, and zucchini. Cook, stirring frequently, 4 minutes. Add the asparagus and snow peas and cook 2 minutes.
  3. Add the tomatoes, lemon zest, lemon juice, and oregano and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer then reduce the heat to low and cook until the onions and zucchini have softened slightly and the asparagus and snow peas are crisp-tender, 5-6 minutes. Stir in the spinach and cook until wilted, 2 minutes.
  4. Add the drained pasta to the pan, tossing well to combine. 

Garlic Mixture
Tomato Mixture 
Spinach Added 
Cooked Sauce
Divide among 4 bowls and garnish with lemon zest. Serve right away.

For tons of great info on cooking asparagus, check out Lita Watson's How to Cook Asparagus article at Quick Easy Cook.

Vegetarian Pasta with Zucchini, Asparagus, and Snow Peas


  1. Oh wow - full of delicious goodness! Thanks for sharing on the "What's for Dinner" linky!