Pasta with Zucchini Sauce and Watercress Pesto

Pasta with Zucchini Sauce and Watercress Pesto
Teresa Blackburn
  • Yield: 10 servings


Watercress Pesto:
1 bundle fresh watercress
1cup extra-virgin olive oil
1pinch sea salt
Sauce and Pasta:
1/2cup olive oil
4tablespoons butter
10cups sliced zucchini (about 5 pounds)
1cup chopped garlic scapes (1 bundle)
1tablespoon sea salt
1cup white wine
1cup water
1pound tagliardi pasta (or pasta of choice)
Grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese


  1. To prepare the pesto, place all ingredients into a food processor fitted with the swivel blade and pulse until watercress is finely ground. The infused olive oil will be bright green. Keeps for a couple of weeks in the refrigerator.
  2. To prepare sauce, heat olive oil and butter over medium heat in a large stockpot. Add zucchini, garlic and salt. Stir, coating the vegetables well. Sauté until vegetables begin to soften, 5 to 7 minutes. Cover and simmer 10 minutes. Zucchini will collapse and release its liquid, becoming “soupy.” Add water and wine, and continue cooking uncovered for another 7 minutes. Remove from heat and puree the mixture with an immersion blender. Taste for salt.
  3. Cook pasta according to package directions. (Tagliardi, thin egg pasta squares, require 4 minutes cooking time.) Drain and return to pot.
  4. Spoon warm sauce over pasta, and fold throughout—gently coating the pasta. Dot with watercress pesto oil. Dust with cheese, parmesan or pecorino.

Nutritional Info *per serving

  • Calories 581
  • Fat 42g
  • Saturated Fat 10g
  • Cholesterol 73mg
  • Sodium 725mg
  • Carbohydrate 37g
  • Fiber 4g
  • Sugars 4g
  • Protein 11g