One of the nice things about having someone else in the house is that Ariana likes Pasta and now I have the perfect excuse to cook it and not feel guilty about it. Today I made this simple and yet incredibly tasty pasta dish that Ariana and I both really enjoyed, and the Toddster dined on leftover meat and potatoes. Everybody was happy!
One of the things I like most about pasta is it's incredible versatility! You can dine on a simple dish of just buttered pasta with a bit of cheese and be just as happy as you would be with a more complicated dish. Pasta is the perfect thing to cook when you are tired and starving and you want a tasty meal on the table that doesn't take a lot of effort.
It can be as simple as opening a jar of sauce, heating it and dumping it on the pasta, which trust me . . . I have done on occasion. Lacking in inspiration, but still wanting something tasty to eat. There are some very good pasta sauces out there and there are some really blah ones. The trick is to experiment and taste a few different ones to find your favourite one and then to stick to that one.
Today I took advantage of all the ripe cherry tomatoes in the garden at this time of year and in the shops, and created a fresh sauce of cherry tomatoes that I quite simply marinated in a mix of vinegars and good olive oil.
Tossed with the fresh pasta, and heated through, I then topped it with some tasty crispy bread crumbs that added a bit of texture and another layer of flavours. All in all it was simple and quite delicious.
You do need to marinate the tomatoes in the dressing for about an hour before you use them, but if you do that and then go off and do something else, you can just cook the pasta when you are ready to serve and your meal will be on the table pronto.
It's delicious, inexpensive and very simple to make. I reckon even Todd could make it with a little bit of direction! Who says fine dining needs to be complicated or expensive? I hope you'll give this a go and that you enjoy it as much as Ariana and I did!
*Spaghetti with a Marinated Cherry Tomato Sauce*
salt and pepper to taste
extra olive oil to taste
For the crispy crumb topping:
2 slices of good white bread, crusts removed and made into coarse crumbs
2 TBS olive oil
fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
a pinch of garlic powder
3 TBS finely grated Parmesan cheese
Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and squeeze over a bowl to remove the juice and the seeds. Discard the juice and seeds. Tear the basil and add to the tomatoes. Pour over the olive oil, and both vinegars and a healthy seasoning of salt and pepper. Mix well to combine, pressing the tomatoes lightly down into the marinade. Allow to stand for minimum one hour at room temperature. Don't refrigerate.
Make the crispy crumb topping as the pasta is cooking. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the bread crumbs, along with some seasoning and the garlic powder. Cook, stirring and shaking over medium heat until the crumbs brown. Remove from the heat and quickly stir in the Parmesan cheese, making sure it is well combined. Set aside.