We've never been pasta eaters in my family. I have a great old spaghetti sauce recipe I used to make for a crowd and, of course, mac and cheese when the kids were small, but these days I rarely make pasta dishes. My mother didn't either...mac and cheese, but that's it. I don't know about my boys any more, but I know my daughter doesn't eat pasta much (if at all) either.
So normally, I wouldn't jump right in and make Ina's Garden Pasta, but I was intrigued with the way she "marinated" the tomatoes and wanted to see how they turned out. Another thing I liked about this recipe was I had all the ingredients needed without a trip to the store. Always a plus.
The sweetness of the tomatoes shines through in this dish; I thought it was delicious. Here's a pasta dish that you can adapt for just one person. Or two.
Summer Garden Pasta
2006, Barefoot Contessa at Home
4 pints cherry tomatoes, halved
Good olive oil
2 tablespoons minced garlic (6 cloves)
18 large basil leaves, julienned, plus extra for serving
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 pound dried angel hair pasta
1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
Combine the cherry tomatoes, 1/2 cup olive oil, garlic, basil leaves, red pepper flakes, 1 teaspoon salt, and the pepper in a large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, and set aside at room temperature for about 4 hours.
Just before you're ready to serve, bring a large pot of water with a splash of olive oil and 2 tablespoons salt to a boil and add the pasta. Cook al dente according to the directions on the package (be careful - it only takes 2 to 3 minutes!). Drain the pasta well and add to the bowl with the cherry tomatoes. Add the cheese and some extra fresh basil leaves and toss well. Serve in big bowls with extra cheese on each serving. Serves six.