What better way to show off your garden’s harvest (or your appetite for healthy eating) than with a showcase of fresh zucchini or crookneck squash, sweet cherry tomatoes and tender baby arugula? Dressed with a zesty arugula sauce for depth of flavor, and finished with plenty of lemon zest and fresh herbs, this dish is a lovely way to celebrate summer's plenty.
This recipe comes together quickly and makes a great cold lunch salad the next day (if you have any leftovers, that is). Unusual pasta shapes such as gigli (a flowerlike shape also called riccioli or campanelle) are fun to use in this dish, but any short pasta you like will be delicious.
To make the arugula sauce, place the arugula, parsley, garlic and capers in a food processor and process until the mixture is roughly chopped. With the machine running, add the olive oil and lemon juice in a slow, steady stream, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste, and set aside.
Bring at least 2 quarts of water to a boil over high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of salt and the pasta, and stir for 1 minute. Cook until the pasta is al dente, according to package directions. Drain and reserve at least 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the leeks, shallots and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onions begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook until the squash is crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.
Add the arugula sauce to the skillet, along with 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking liquid, and stir until combined. Add the arugula and cook until it wilts, stirring frequently.
Transfer the drained pasta to the skillet, add the cherry tomatoes and stir to combine, adding more pasta cooking liquid as needed if the mixture seems dry. Just before serving stir in the parsley, basil and lemon zest.
To serve, transfer the pasta to a large platter and sprinkle with the cheeses. Serve hot.