I love cooking with cherry tomatoes—they’re sweeter than Beefsteaks and Cherokee Purples and they’re not as watery, so cooking them presents a hosts of possibilities that large tomatoes don’t. They don’t fall apart, which is good, but they also don’t offer as much juice for a sauce either. So, while this recipe relies on cherry tomatoes, it contains a couple handfuls of crushed tomatoes as well, which I always have on hand as my daughter works at a produce stand. So I’m flush with over-the-hill, juicy tomatoes just waiting to be crushed at a moment’s notice. This pasta recipes comes together in a flash and also features tomato’s summer cousins, garlic and basil. Enjoy.
Pasta with “Melted” Tomatoes, Garlic and Basil
8 ounces thin spaghetti (or other long pasta–pasta water reserved)
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup slivered onion (optional)
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
2 large handfuls crushed tomatoes or 1 large tomato, crushed
1 tablespoon butter
Handful of slivered basil (or chiffonade)
Grated Parmigiano Regianno cheese
1. Cook pasta, reserving some pasta water. In a large skillet, heat olive oil; add cherry tomatoes, onion and garlic. Saute about 10 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes. Cook 5 minutes. Add pasta, butter and basil to skillet. Cook 5 minutes, adding pasta water to thin if necessary. Serve with grated cheese.