Monday, June 21, 2010

red in the face

No Romas for me. If I lived in Naples near all of those San Marzanos, I'd surely change my mind, but here, I prefer small, red, vine-ripe ones.

There's nothing like a tomato sandwich is there? Toast bread, slather with mayo, pile on the sliced tomatoes, add lots of salt and pepper... Oh man.......

We can't get enough of them here at 3906, so tomatoes are always on the grocery list. The other day, Spoke went to the market for a few things we needed. It was a short list and at the top I had written:

2 cluster tomatoes


I got 2 clusters OF tomatoes. So, I ditched the dinner sandwiches and made sauce.

Red In the Face Tomato Sauce with Spaghetti

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 or 5 cluster (vine ripe) tomatoes, washed and chopped (No, I don't peel them.)
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
salt & pepper
water (preferably salted, pasta water)
2 large sprigs of fresh basil
8 ounces dried spaghetti

This is a super quick sauce but it relies on tomatoes and fresh basil. If you don't have basil, don't make it. If you do, it will take you just minutes and it will be delicious.

Put a large pot of water on to boil.

In a saute pan, heat the olive oil with the garlic cloves. Continue smashing the cloves now and then to release their flavor.

Add the tomatoes. Salt and pepper them. Cook about five minutes then keep warm.

When the water is boiling, add a tablespoon or more of salt. Stir. Drop the spaghetti and cook according to package directions, but ONLY until al dente.

When the spaghetti is halfway cooked, add about 1/4 cup of pasta water to the tomatoes and let them simmer while the spaghetti finishes cooking, adding more water as needed to keep them moist and bubbling. Remove the garlic cloves.

When the pasta is ready, drain it, or use tongs, and transfer it to the sauce. Season with salt and pepper, then stir the spaghetti until it is coated with sauce.

Tear fresh basil leaves all over, give another stir, and serve with Parmigiano Reggiano.
serves two

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