Zucchini-Tapenade Pasta Salad with Sausage & Maple Glazed Carrots

As u can well tell by now, I love pasta salads, it comes together quickly, and makes the perfect one-dish (healthy!) meal for those busy bee weeknights. And while we get just the one season here in the tropics, this warm pasta salad is perfect for a nippy Fall day.

Ingredients (feeds 2-4 pax):
1 cup fusilli pasta
3 cups sausage, diced to 1 inch cubes
2 large zucchini, sliced to 1cm-thick semi-circlets or 3/4cm thick rings
1 large carrot, sliced to matchsticks lengths
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp olive tapenade
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 tsp maple syrup

1) Fry sausage in non-stick pan (you don't need oil in this case), until just cooked through, about 5 minutes on medium-high heat. Set aside, leaving the drippings in the pan.

2) With the drippings from the sausage, fry carrots until just wilted, about 1 minute on medium-high heat.

3) Turn heat down to medium, add minced garlic, and maple syrup, stirring through. Salt to taste.

4) Push carrots to the edges, add zucchini, fry till about cooked through, about 1.5 minutes. Salt to taste.

5) In the meantime, cook pasta in salted boiling water, until 2 minutes before instructed cooking time.

6) Drain into bowl, and add tapenade and olive oil, tossing through.

7) Return all ingredients into the pan, toss through.

8) Add cooked pasta to the pan, and serve warm.

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