Linguine and Zucchini with Bacon Corn Pesto
cups corn, fresh cut from about 6 ears
garlic cloves, minced, evenly divided
teaspoons sea or coarse kosher salt
teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
cup Parmesan cheese, fresh grated, plus more for serving
cup walnuts or pine nuts, toasted
cup + 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
-1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
ounces linguine (like Barila whole grain)
tablespoons Olive oil
medium zucchini, cut in ribbons using a potato peeler or mandolin
Cook bacon in a large skillet until crispy and brown, set aside on paper towels to drain. Drain grease from skillet all but 1 tablespoon. Over medium-low heat add corn, garlic, salt and pepper sautéing until corn is tender but not browned, about 4 minutes. Transfer 1 and 1/2 cups corn to small bowl and set aside. Add remaining corn to the bowl of a food processor along with Parmesan, pine nuts and 1/3 cup basil. With machine running, add olive oil through feed tube and blend until pesto is almost smooth, set aside
Start the pasta water cooking in a large pot of boiling salted water cooking until al dente and reserving 1 and 1/2 cups of the pasta water. Meanwhile in the same skillet heat 1 to 2 tablespoons over medium-low heat, add garlic and zucchini ribbons sauté about 5 minutes just until zucchini starts to break down and becomes tender.
Drain pasta and return to pot. Add half of the corn pesto and corn kernels, tossing over low heat until warmed through, adding reserved pasta water by 1/4 cupful and additional corn pesto if needed until you get a smooth thin consistency and all the noodles are coated evenly. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Sprinkle 1/4 cup basil leaves over top and serve with a sprinkle of bacon crumbles and Parmesan cheese.