THE DAY HAS FINALLY ARRIVED!
Zucchini and marjoram make one of the best pairings in the kitchen. Spaghetti with this pair, plus fried eggs, is one of my favorite, I mean FAVORITE, dishes in the whole world. An old Neapolitan recipe, simple but tasty. I go crazy over this dish.
Jeanette had planted the zucchini. (You can read about it here.) I had planted the marjoram. It remained only to wait for two zucchini. (The recipe calls for two of them.)
The first one had arrived while we were on vacation in Utah. (We had offered it to our neighbor, who took care of our garden in our absence.) Yesterday, July 31st, I finally picked the second and third ones (for us the first and second ones). I practically ran into the kitchen to cook them!
1 lb spaghetti (It has to be spaghetti, no other pasta. I don't know why. In the olden days I imagine they used vermicelli.*)
½ large onion, chopped
2 zucchini, cut in little cubes
2 or 3 branches of fresh marjoram
extra-virgin olive oil
*=In Italy, vermicelli are somewhat thicker than spaghetti, not thinner as in America.
This recipe is very easy — it's just that it requires a little time to cut the zucchini, and a little skill in the proper sautéeing of the cubes.
In a frying pan, heat some oil. Add the onions and cook them till translucent. (No garlic in this recipe.) Add the cubes of zucchini, salt and pepper, and sautée them for 15-20 minutes, until soft and a little caramelized, but not completely browned. You have to control the heat very accurately, stir the cubes often, and add a drizzle of oil if necessary. After 5-7 minutes, lay the marjoram branches on top of the zucchini cubes. (Or, for a stronger flavor, remove the leaves from the branches and mix them with the zucchini.)
Meanwhile, in a little skillet (preferably of cast iron), heat some butter and fry the two eggs sunny side up. It is probable that in the old days the yolks were still runny, so as to thicken the sauce. Nowadays, perhaps it is more conventional to fry the eggs until the yolks are hard, flipping them over if necessary. That is what I did.
When the spaghetti are cooked, strain them and combine the spaghetti, zucchini, and eggs. Stir until the eggs break in little pieces. (Don't stir the egg too vigorously; a few large pieces of egg should remain.) Serve with pecorino, and Buon Appetito!
|Perhaps you can see in the photo that the zucchini are not browned enough. They are adequately tender, but they are not caramelized. See my impatience to make and eat this dish?!|
|Another incarnation (August 19, 2014).|
|Foto dal mio orticello (luglio 2016)|