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Monday, 5 August 2019

Simple Tomato Pasta

Pasta is love. Pasta is life.

You know by now that I love pasta so much. This is one of my favourite pasta recipes because it's quick and easy to make, but also very delicious!

I love an adaptable recipe, so you can substitute the cherry tomatoes for one large tomato if that's what's available to you. Maybe the corner shop near you only has tomato paste, a few teaspoons of that should work well if that's the case. If you can't get fresh herbs, then dried will do just fine (a teaspoon each should do the trick). If you don't have spaghetti or linguine, then any other pasta shape will do. If you like you can even use the sauce as a base for prawns, clams, fish, or chicken. Mix it up, and make it your own.

You can even go a bit fancy and use some multi-coloured tomatoes! I found these in the reduced section.
Ingredients (serves one)
  • 80g of dried spaghetti or linguine (or more if you're ravenous!)
  • Handful of cherry tomatoes
  • Handful of fresh basil and parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic*
  • Salt
  • 1 tsp sugar 
  • Black pepper to taste
  • *optional* Chilli flakes to taste
  • *optional* Grated Parmesan, pecorino, or a vegetarian/vegan equivalent
*I normally use four cloves because I'm a garlic fiend, but I've toned it down for this recipe!

Method

Crush, peel, and chop the cloves of garlic.

Gently heat the oil in a frying pan, and cook the garlic until softened. Add the chilli flakes now, if using. I just use a pinch to add some heat, but if you like it spicy then feel free to add more!

Meanwhile, boil some salted water in a large pan. While the garlic and chilli are cooking, start boiling the pasta. Be careful not to brown or burn the garlic, keep the heat nice and low.

Next, chop the tomatoes and add them to the pan, cook until softened.

An obligatory picture of garlic and chilli sizzling away...
When the pasta is still a little hard, take a small cupful of the pasta water and set it to one side. Drain the pasta and save for later. To prevent it sticking together, add a little oil and mix through.

To the tomatoes, garlic and chilli, add the pasta water, sugar, a generous pinch of salt, black pepper, and the herbs. Simmer until most of the water has evaporated, then add the pasta into the mix. It will finish cooking in the sauce.

Serve up, and enjoy! If you're an omnivore like me, you can add a generous amount of parmesan/pecorino before serving. If you're vegan or veggie, you can eat it as it is or use a vegan cheese/one without rennet.

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