31 dishes, 31 days – I’m cooking my way through Melissa Clark‘s “No-Sweat Cooking” from the August issue of Every Day with Rachael Ray

Pasta with pesto is a favorite this time of year, when fresh basil is so abundant most people can’t keep up with what their gardens are producing, but I have to admit I get bored with it sometimes. Melissa Clark’s no-sweat version has a couple of fun grace notes added in the form of crisp crumbled bacon and creamy ricotta – two additions that make this simple dish sing.

zucchini ribbons

I made a couple of minor changes to the original recipe, using ribbons of zucchini instead of asparagus since that’s what we had on hand, and adding a spritz of lemon juice to the pesto for brightness. The dish came together in minutes and had a wonderful combination of textures and flavors – it was just what I needed after a long day at the office.

Get the recipe: Arugula Pesto Pasta with Ricotta and Bacon

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