Traditional recipes

Succo Felice Cocktail Recipe

Succo Felice Cocktail Recipe

This sophisticated take on the classic Screwdriver, on the menu at Betto in New York City, substitutes smoky mescal for vodka and features a combination of orange, pineapple, and lemon juices.


  • 1 ½ ounces Fidencio Mescal Sin Humo
  • ¾ ounce Dimmi
  • ½ ounce orange juice
  • ½ ounce pineapple juice
  • ¼ ounce lemon juice
  • ¼ ounce pineapple syrup
  • 2 drops of orange blossom water
  • Ice
  • Slice of orange, for garnish
  • Maraschino cherry, for garnish


In a mixing glass, combine all of the ingredients except for the garnishes and shake. Strain into an ice-filled double rocks glass. Garnish with a toothpick pierced with the orange and cherry.

Flirty Friday Cocktails: Raspberry Beer Cocktail

I came across this delightful Spring cocktail on Pinterest earlier today and decided to share it with you all. I have done a Flirty Friday Cocktail in a while so why not get back to it with the Easter Sunday celebrations because it is the season of rebirth, why not use it to my advantage and get back to re-committing myself to the things I love to do. Since, my mom gave up alcohol for Lent we won’t be trying this recipe out until Sunday so you all will have to tell me how it tastes. Here’s what you will need:

1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries

4 bottles of Corona beer (12 oz.) chilled

1 container frozen raspberry lemonade concentrate, thawed or pink lemonade

1/2 cup good quality vodka

Garnish: lemon slices, or raspberries.

In a large container stir together the first 4 ingredients. Serve over ice.
Garnish with raspberries.
To make ahead, stir together lemonade concentrate and vodka in a large container. Stir in raspberries and beer just before serving. Garnish, if desired.

This drink is the perfect combination of everything my mom and I love, I love lemonade and she loves beer. I can’t wait to try it! Perfect for Easter Brunch! You all enjoy and have a FAB Easter Sunday if it is in your faith, if not have a FAB weekend!

Flirty Friday Cocktail: Skinnygirl Suntan

I feel like I missed a week or something, but anyways…I don’t know if it’s the new year or just a sudden realization that I’ve been kind of half-assing on everything in my life, especially when it comes to losing these final 10lbs. I feel like I’ve been trying to lose those last 10-15lbs for all of 2013. I’d gain then lose, then gain again, and I really don’t have anyone to blame but myself. Not even my food-pusher mom because at the end of the day the word “NO!” was invented for a reason, right? As some of you may or may not know I do WeightWatchers, and I love it. It has really been a great experience to help me focus on the way I think about food. I still eat whatever I want, just in moderation and making smarter choices. I would never ever want to give up my delicious cocktails! I love alcohol on a non-alcoholic level. I don’t get wasted everyday, but I do enjoy a nice specialty drink. Especially if it is sweet, which often times means high in calories. I decided to focus on a smarter, lower-calorie option to feature as my Flirty Friday Cocktail this week.

As a growing fan of Bethenny Frankel (I catch her show sometimes when I’m at home or the gym, and I don’t want to turn. I wouldn’t say it’s on the same daytime show watching level as Kelly & Michael, Wendy, or Ellen, but it’s pretty good), she has this fabulous business of selling lower calorie alcoholic beverages and I wanted to feature one of them. I’ve had my own inner conflict about the name. Guys can’t want lower-calorie alcoholic beverage options? But my mom has bought her wines and margaritas before, and they weren’t horrible. Since I am a huge fan of the mix of coconut & pineapple, and I am getting myself together for the warm weather months that are approaching (hopefully sooner than I actually think), I thought this Skinnygirl Suntan sounded quite nice from the Skinnygirl Cocktails website. I figured this would be the perfect cocktail to complete my re-imagination of the summer I have already been planning in my head, which has mainly consisted of me putting on my favorite bikini and laying in the sauna, heat all the way up, with my iPod, and yes, sunglasses, eyes closed. It’s…part of my weight loss journey? Anyways, here’s what you will need to make this fabulous drink:

  • 2 parts Skinnygirl™ Island Coconut Vodka
  • 2 parts club soda
  • Splash of pineapple juice

Now just pour over ice and stir. Garnish with a slice of lime if you like )

So easy right?! Enjoy! Remember to Love & Share.

Black and Orange Russian

The classic Black Russian is made with 1 part Kahlúa and 1 part vodka over ice, but I gave it a bit of a twist by using ABSOLUT Mandarin, a mandarin and citrus infused vodka. Add a bit of orange peel garnish and you have an updated classic drink suitable for…well pretty much anytime if you ask me!

1 oz Kahlúa
1 oz ABSOLUT Mandarin vodka
Orange peel

1. Fill a double old-fashioned glass with ice cubes. Pour the Kahlúa and the ABSOLUT Mandarin vodka in. Stir, then garnish with the orange peel.

Destination: Mexico

Is there any drink in the world as synonymous with its country as Mexico and Margaritas?

The Best Spicy Margarita Recipe:

¾ cup good tequila ( I love Casamigos, and my all-time favorite tequila is Clase Azul)

¼ to ½ jalapeño pepper, plus extra slices for garnish

½ cup fresh lime juice, plus lime slices for garnish

¼ cup simple syrup or fresh squeezed orange juice

a few splashes of sparkling water if you want

Simple Syrup (this makes extra)

1 cup sugar (or coconut sugar for a healthier alternative — see my recipe at the top of this post)


Pour the tequila into a mason jar or pitcher. Add the sliced jalapeño, with seeds, adding more if you want spicier margaritas. Set aside at room temp for 30 minutes (or longer, the longer you let the jalapeños infuse, the spicier it will be). Muddle the other half of the jalapeño.

Make the simple syrup. In a small saucepan, combine equal parts of sugar and water. Bring to a boil, stirring until the sugar has dissolved.

Make the margaritas by mixing together the jalapeño-infused tequila, muddled jalapeño, cointreau, lime juice and a little simple syrup (ideally in a cocktail shaker – I have this cute gold one from West Elm) . Taste it to check. If you want it spicier, add a little more jalapeño and let it it sit a little longer. Pour into chili salt dipped glasses and add lime slices and jalapeños for garnish.

Should you use Triple Sec or Cointreau in a margarita?

Most margarita recipes will call for either/or Triple Sec or Cointreau, but which one is better to use? Triple sec is a liqueur made from the skins of oranges and ranges in alcohol content from 15% to 30%, depending on the brand. Cointreau is an orange liqueur made from sweet and bitter orange skins, and is much stronger, at 40%. So it really depends on how boozy you like your margaritas (as you guys could probably guess, I use Cointreau)

How do you make homemade chili salt for the rim?

Take 1 tablespoon chili powder and 1 tablespoon kosher salt. I like to add a pinch of cayenne in mine too.

Mix the chili powder and kosher salt on a small plate. Wet the rim of a glass with the lime wedge dip the rim in the chile powder and twist to coat.

The Best Cocktails to Make with Limoncello

You might be used to having a taste of Italy's famous lemon liqueur limoncello at the end of a good meal, but there's no reason to relegate this tasty tipple to digestif status. A bit of limoncello can bring a sweet squeeze of citrus to all sorts of cocktails. Here are a few of our favorite ways to get more limoncello into your cocktail rotation.


1.5 oz Herradura Silver Tequila
.5 oz limoncello
.25 oz amaretto
1 oz lime juice
.5 oz simple syrup
.5 oz orange juice


Shake with ice and serve in a large coupe glass and garnish with a lime wheel.


1 oz Limoncello
1 oz vodka
1 Brooklyn Crafted Lemon Lime Ginger Beer


Add all the ingredients together in a Julep cup and mix. Garnish with a lemon wheel and a mint sprig.


½ oz. Italicus
½ oz. limoncello
½ oz. Nardini grappa
5 dashes lemon bitters
1 scoop of Oddfellows&rsquo lemon-hibiscus sorbetto
Prosecco to top


Combine all ingredients except sorbetto in a shaker with ice and shake. Scoop the sorbetto into a frozen coupe. Strian the cocktail on top and finish with prosecco.


1 oz Don Papa Rum
1 oz Limoncello
1 oz Vermouth Blanc


Pour all ingredients into a mixing glass with ice and stir for thirty seconds. Pour into a rocks glass over a large piece of ice and zest with a generous peel of lemon.


1.5 oz Maker&rsquos Mark Bourbon
.25 oz Pallini Limoncello
Juice of 3 lemon wedges
1.5 tsp all-natural apricot jam
4 sage leaves
Soda water


Pour all ingredients except soda into a shaker tin and muddle. Add ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a highball glass over fresh ice and top with soda water. Garnish with fresh sage and/or a twist.

By Kristine Lassor Hopkins of Abattoir


1.25 oz infused lemon vodka*
1.25 oz limoncello
.5 oz homemade lemonade


Combine all ingredients and shake with ice. Strain and pour into a martini glass.

*Lemon Vodka: Peel 5-8 large lemons, keep the fruit of the lemons for juicing. Add to 1 bottle of vodka and steep for 1 week, then remove peels.


2 oz New Riff Bourbon
1 oz limoncello
.25 oz peach puree
.25 oz lemon juice
4 dashes peach bitters


Mix all ingredients in a mixing glass. Strain and pour in a rocks glass over an ice sphere. Garnish with dehydrated lemon.

When actor Stanley Tucci isn’t strolling piazzas wearing Boggi, Brunello Cucinelli, and Ferragamo— the favored Italian designers that the father of five says he can “ill afford”—he’s often in an apron.

If Tucci’s chosen love is acting, his passion for cooking and eating probably came at birth. Food is his muse, especially Italian food, as seen in his films, family cookbooks, and a forthcoming food memoir. These days, there are plenty of ways to watch Tucci in the kitchen. And there’s nothing like seeing Tucci in food scenes. So, what dishes and recipes are most deserving of our attention?

In the newly released CNN Original docu-series, Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy, the actor rolls up his sleeves in at least three different episodes—Naples, Lombardy, and Florence—to wow us with his repertoire of Italian cooking. Equally important are the restaurant scenes in Big Night (1996), the film he co-wrote, co-directed, and starred in. There, Tucci acted as Secondo, an Italian chef-restaurateur, by adopting the mannerisms and techniques of a real Italian chef, Gianni Scappin, who he shadowed for a year and a half. All in all, the actor made a pretty convincing performance of pretending to be Italian.

When he’s not filming, Tucci often cooks with his family. He says he fell in love with wife Felicity Blunt (the sister of The Devil Wears Prada actress Emily Blunt), over a discussion about food and cooking. That became an ongoing tradition, involving detailed meal planning and a meticulous selection of ingredients. Many of their family-cooked dishes fill the pages of “The Tucci Table: Cooking with Family and Friends,” a cookbook written by Tucci and Blunt with contributions from their children.

“When they were younger and everyone went to high school, we sat down together every night,” says Tucci, adding that the age difference between his children has made the meal schedule a bit fractured in recent years. “But the goal is to sit together as much as possible and eat.”

But for our purposes and for a taste of action, comedy, and drama, here are the top Italian dishes plucked from Tucci’s best scene-stealing food moments.

Note: for the Big Night dinner recipes, we recommend a wine pairing of Chianti.

1. The Perfect Winter Pasta: Pizzoccheri from Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy the Lombardy Episode

In the upcoming Lombardy episode, Tucci travels to the Orobic Alps to taste the mountain cheese of Paolo Ciapparelli. Stunned by the flavor, Tucci decides to cook pizzoccheri, a regional pasta dish from Valtellina, Italy for everyone. “The noodles are made with buckwheat and regular flour. It has cabbage, huge amounts of butter, garlic, potatoes and Valtalline cheese called Bitto Storico Ribelle, which is similar to Parmigiano, but can be aged longer, up to 18 years,” he says. “It's an incredible dish, and it’s one you would only eat where it’s really cold."

2. The Go-To Family Meal: Penne alla “Salsa Maria Rosa” from Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy the Tuscany Episode

Tucci’s family recipes reflect his Southern-Italian American heritage and the influence of a year spent in Florence, Italy. During the Tuscany episode, Stanley and his parents will return to Florence, to reminisce and cook their go-to Tuscan tomato sauce made with a celery and carrot base and a bit of butter. During that year abroad, Stanley says his mother was inspired by the spirit of the Renaissance and learned this simple, yet delicious combination from a neighbor from whom the pasta takes its name.

3. The Subtle Seafood Risotto from “Big Night”

The opening scene of Big Night is a monument to all Italian restaurateurs who arrived in America to open a restaurant dedicated to their regional cuisine only to be pressured into serving spaghetti and meatballs. When Secondo, played by Tucci, serves a creamy stew of arborio rice with seafood and fresh diced parsley, his dismayed customer asks for rice and a side of spaghetti. Tensions mount, but the customer is always right. Seafood remains one of Tucci’s favorite things to buy in London, where he lives, and where he finds great oysters and langoustines.

Tony Shalhoub (left) and Stanley Tucci in Big Night.

4. Roasted Herb Chicken with sautéed grapes and onions from “Big Night”

In Big Night, Secondo is led to believe that if he prepares a giant feast for the legendary singer, Louis Prima, his failing business will turn around. In a Fellini-style scene, we see platter after platter paraded through the dining room as the magic of the food makes guests go crazy. During the second course, Tucci and co-star Tony Shalhoub (as Primo) prepare oven-baked chickens stuffed with rosemary and herbs. They serve several vegetable sides, including sautéed grapes and onions, potatoes and asparagus.

Try our recipe for herb-baked chicken with potatoes and artichokes.

5. The Secret Recipe for Timballo di Maccheroni from “Big Night”

This Southern Italian baked pasta stuffed with sausage, hard boiled eggs, and a delicious ragù must be cut at the precise moment to maintain its beautiful consistency. And when sliced, it's a marvel of a dish, so good it sparks an outburst from one guest during the final dinner scene who gets up to kiss the chef in praise of his talent. Tucci will revisit the dish once again in the Sicily episode of Searching For Italy, this time to try a version made by a princess.

6. The Hangover Cure: Breakfast Frittata from “Big Night”

For the final scene of Big Night, we're back in the kitchen, and it's the morning. Tucci, Tony Shalhoub and their trusted server played by Marc Anthony show up haggard from a hard night of fighting on the beach and entertaining. Too exhausted to speak, they sit together and eat. According to film trivia, this scene was done in one take, which meant that Tucci had to flip the fried frittata perfectly without pausing.

Aperol Tequila Swizzle Cocktail – Something Different!

I need to get out my step stool in order to conjure gems like this Aperol Tequila cocktail.

Way up high, back in The Inconvenient Cabinet sitting behind the refrigerator, you will just over a dozen bottles of booze. These aren’t my “main squeeze” libations, no, these bottles are the rather queer stash of alcoholic this-and-thats I couldn’t say goodbye to. I think of these oddballs as my alcoholic booty calls — quite ready to satisfy me at a moment’s notice, but knowing never to ask for any real commitment from me. If they were ever bold enough to ask for a permanent place in the main pantry I would toss them out of my cabinet (and life) tout de suite.

For now they benefit from my general unwillingness to say goodbye and the knowledge that once day, as it always does, I will require a quick thrill without the request for main pantry fidelity.

When that moment inevitably happens I will get a step stool, crawl up to The Inconvenient Cabinet and cruise around the dusty neglected bottles to look for a quickie.

High up in the inconvenient cabinet, safe from my Beloved’s periodic urges to sweep through the pantry with a trashcan, you will find misfit bottles of several varieties. They are:

  • My inheritance. 25 years when my grandmother died I inherited a flowery set of mostly chipped china (thanks Grandma!) and a dusty box of the spirits she had kept in her own misfit storage cabinet. This bequest included a very tall bottle of Galliano from which I never once saw her drink. Given Galliano has been around since the late 1800’s I am guessing she must have inherited it from her own grandmother. I am keeping it and plan to leave it to my nieces when I die.
  • Vacation souvenirs.I simply could not get enough of that limoncello when tripping through the Amalfi Coast that one summer. I just had to wrangle that bottle half way around Europe only to uncork and discover I didn’t much care for it. Who knew that without all the sunshine and coastline views the flavor isn’t the same? Ten bottles of other regional specialties keep the limoncello company.
  • One shot wonders.The rest were probably purchased during some passing obsession I am now quite over with. I include in this category that bottle of absinthe I just had to have — but once never drank. Not once has a guest of mine ever asked for an absinthe, but I do feel some pride knowing I am ready to recreate the Belle Époque in my living room just case they do.

This bottle of Aperol sat somewhere between my vacation souvenirs and the one shot wonders. While in Rome several years ago I couldn’t get enough of its not-too-bitter orange flavor. Naturally I rushed home and foisted an Aperol Spritz into the hand of everyone who wandered by my home between 4PM and 7PM — peak apertivo time. Yet predictably I soon tired not only of the drink, but also the need to open a new bottle of prosecco each time I wanted to serve it.

Without any idea as to what else I could do with it, the bottle was eventually relegated to The Inconvenient Cabinet.

Aperol Tequila Sizzle

Thanks to cookbook author and blogger Greg Henry the Aperol is back down off the shelf to cycle through another circle of life. A quick read through his beautifully photographed book “Savory Cocktails” (published last year by Ulysses Press) has given new life to the many forgotten treasures stored up in that cabinet. Even grandma’s Galliano gets a reprieve! (My poor niece will just have to buy her own bottle! )

Aperol’s bitter orange complexity is a natural foil for tequila and, as presented here, it makes a nice choice for anyone wanting to enjoy its summer associations without all the sugar of a margarita. I wrote to Greg’s publisher asking if I could reprint his recipe so here it is!

21 Classy Cocktails to Know Before You Turn 21

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The first legal drink as a 21-year-old is a once-in-a-lifetime occasion. But when the pressure is on, how do you decide? Before you panic and order a round of shots, check out this list of 21 amazing cocktails. Order any of these for your first drink (and second and third and so on) and you’ll seem wise beyond your years. Know what you want, have an awesome time and prepare for the other tradition: the first post-21 hangover.


1. Moscow Mule

Photo courtesy of

If you order a Moscow mule, make sure it comes in the traditional copper mug for a perfectly chilled cocktail. While there are many variations on the Moscow Mule, my personal favorite is the classic vodka, lime, and ginger beer.

#SpoonTip: Not a vodka fan? You can also try a Kentucky Mule (with bourbon) or a Mayan Mule (with tequila).

2. Lemon Drop

Photo courtesy of Waferboard on Flickr

If you usually chase your vodka with lemonade, then try this sweet and tart cocktail. The drink should be shaken and served in a martini glass, adding to the class factor.

3. Harvey Wallbanger

If a screwdriver is your go-to, age it up with some Galliano, a sweet herbal Italian liqueur. Though not as popular as it once was, the Wallbanger is on an upswing with the return of Galliano’s original recipe in 2010.


4. Paloma

Photo courtesy of

While a margarita is never a bad choice, next time you’re craving a refreshing tequila cocktail, try the lesser known Paloma. The drink uses grapefruit soda, typically Squirt or Fresca in the United States. You have to cross the border to try the drink with the traditional soda, Jarritos.

5. Mexican Shandy

Photo courtesy of

If you’re usually a beer drinker but want to change things up, a shandy is perfect for you. For a Mexican Shandy, I recommend a pilsner or Mexican lager. The addition of tequila and lime completes the shandy.

6. Tequila Sunrise

Photo courtesy of

This cocktail is perfect for the visual-obsessed drinkers out there. The three ingredients form a beautiful gradient due to their different densities, just like oil and water (thank you, middle school science).

7. Dark and Stormy

Photo courtesy of kansasphotos on Flickr

The name “Dark ‘N Stormy” is a trademark of Bermuda’s Gosling’s Rum, but you can rock this cocktail with any dark rum. The key to the drink is balancing the proportions of rum and ginger beer.

8. Daiquiri

Photo courtesy of Ray Sawhill on Flickr

Don’t break out the blender and ice yet. Instead, try the original, unfrozen Daiquiri. I promise it will still be just as refreshing.

9. Mojito

Photo courtesy of Iliyan Yankov

This mint-infused cocktail is great for day-drinking if you want to start your celebrations early. The drink is also the perfect foundation to personalize and make your own with these easy additions.


10. Old Fashioned

Old Fashioned definitely doesn’t mean out of style when it comes to this cocktail. You can do it up with an orange slice and a maraschino cherry or just keep it simple.

11. Manhattan

Photo courtesy of Graeme Maclean on Flickr

New York has brought the world so many great things: pizza, bagels, the Spoon University headquarters, and this cocktail. Perfect for rye whiskey lovers, bitters and vermouth combine to make a swanky drink.

12. Mint Julep

Photo courtesy of

If you prefer your drinks on the sweeter side but still want to go the whiskey/bourbon route, here’s the solution.


13. Rob Roy

Photo courtesy of TheCulinaryGeek on Flickr

This cocktail is named after Scottish folk hero Rob Roy MacGregor, also known as the Scottish Robin Hood. The drink is reddish in color, a fitting homage to MacGregor’s famed red hair.

14. The Godfather

Photo courtesy of

This drink is straightforward: just equal parts Scotch and amaretto, an Italian liqueur. Reportedly a favorite drink of Marlon Brando (though this report came from Disaronno, an amaretto company), many believe the drink is named after the famous movie.

#SpoonTip: Replace the Scotch with vodka to create a Godmother.

15. Rusty Nail

Photo courtesy of Waferboard on Flickr

This cocktail goes all the way back to the 1930s, so no wonder it’s rusty. The Rusty Nail is another simple drink, just Scotch and Drambuie liqueur. Though the exact recipe of Drambuie is secret, it contains Scottish heather honey.

16. Greyhound

This grapefruit juice drink is bright and refreshing, perfect for the summer. I recommend white grapefruit juice over pink or red.

#SpoonTip: A Greyhound can be made with either gin or vodka, so make sure you specify when ordering.

17. Negroni

This drink is strong, so pace yourself. The recipe calls for just gin, Campari, and vermouth, but you can add tonic water or orange juice to cut the alcohol content.

18. Gin Sour

Photo courtesy of Elenadan on Flickr

You’ve probably heard of a whiskey sour, so now it’s time to meet its little brother: the gin sour. The sour family are all very similar. Take your alcohol of choice, in this case, gin, add lots of lemon juice and even out with sugar.


19. St. Germain Cocktail

Photo courtesy of Mike McCune on Flickr

If you haven’t tried St. Germain yet, then what are you waiting for? The elder flower liqueur is a fantastic addition to champagne or even white wine. And the cocktail is as simple as anything, just champagne, St. Germain, and a little club soda.

20. French 75

Photo courtesy of Jules Morgan on Flickr

Gin meets champagne in a sparkling cocktail. Named after a French canon from WWI, the drink is as powerful as its namesake. Be careful or it may go straight to your head.

21. Kir Royale

Photo courtesy of Shari’s Berries on Flickr

This drink is for all the fruit lovers out there. Made with a black raspberry liqueur, the Kir Royale is as tasty as it is pretty. You can even add some fresh raspberries to increase the fruity flavor.

Letters From Andy

Adapted from Vegetable Soups from Deborah Madison’s Kitchen.


Wash the leeks if using. Chop the potato, leaving the skin on if you like, if it’s organic. Warm the olive oil in soup pot over medium heat. Add the leeks and the potato, give them a stir, and while they’re warming up, slick the kale or spigariello off its ropy stems, then slice the leaves into short ribbons. Add the kale/spigariello to the pot along with the cauliflower, garlic, and salt. Cook for about 5 minutes. Add the stock, bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes. Ladle the soup into bowls and drizzle some olive oil into each. Season with pepper and grate a little cheese into the soup.

Pasta with Zucchini, Lemon, Pine Nuts and Herbs


  • 1 pound corkscrew pasta (gemelli, rotelli, etc.)
  • 8 ounces small, firm green or golden zucchini
  • 1/2 cup mixed fresh herbs: Italian parsley, marjoram, basil, chervil, hyssop, oregano, lemon thyme and others
  • 1 lemon
  • 6 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 5 T pine nuts
  • 1 onion or 3 shallots, thinly sliced then roughly chopped
  • 4 teaspoons tiny capers, rinsed in water
  • 2 sun-dried tomatoes, cut into narrow strips
  • salt and pepper
  • Parmesan, grated fresh

Recipe Notes

Adapted from The Greens Cook Book.


Slice the zucchini diagonally into pieces about the same thickness as the pasta (matchstick size, 1/8″ or so). Line up the slices and cut them into narrow matchsticks. Each one will be tipped with green or gold. Make a selection of fresh herbs from those suggested in the ingredients list. Pull the leaves off the stems and chop them, but not too finely. Include any flowers, such as the purple flowers of the basil or pink thyme blossoms. With a vegetable peeler, remove a thin strip of peel from the lemon and cut it into fine slivers. (I grated the peel.) Heat 2 T. olive oil in a small pan and add the pine nuts. Cook them until they begin to color — watch carefully because they can start to burn quickly then add the shallots. Cook the two together over medium low heat until the shallots are soft and the pine nuts are brown. Transfer them to a wide bowl and add the rest of the oil, the capers, lemon peel, sun-dried tomatoes and herbs. Season with salt, freshly ground black pepper and 1/2 teaspoon or so lemon juice to taste. Add salt to the boiling water, drop in the zucchini and cook it about 1 minute. Scoop it out, shake off the water, and add it to the bowl with the other ingredients. Next, cook the pasta, scoop it out and add it to the bowl as well. Toss with a pair of tongs, so that the noodles are coated with the oil and herbs. Serve with the cheese passed separately.