Pasta Pomodoro is the perfect recipe to highlight juicy, ripe summer tomatoes. This simple gluten-free pasta dish is fresh and light!
My Mom called me last week with an enticing offer…
Come over and get some tomatoes. I have 37 of them!
Mom, why did you buy 37 tomatoes?
I picked them! From Becky’s garden!
Mom, why did you pick 37 tomatoes from Becky’s garden?
Because she planted 45 tomato plants!
Well alrighty then!
It’s FINALLY tomato season around here, y’all! It almost physically hurts buying tomatoes in the season that shall not be named because they taste like the absence of flavor compared to garden-fresh summer tomatoes. My Mom has planted tomato plants in the summer for as long as I can remember (unfortunately they haven’t taken off over the past couple of years for whatever reason hence the raid on her friend Becky’s garden – thanks, Becky!) and I grew up snacking on fat slices of tomatoes salted to within an inch of their lives nearly everyday in the summertime as a kid.
Usually paired with a giant glass of Koolaid poured from a plastic pitcher. My brothers and I would tag along on grocery shopping trips in the summer just so we could peruse the wall o’ Koolaid packets. Because nothing says summertime like Purplesaurus Rex, am I right?!
Anyway, I did indeed head over to my parent’s place and, after slicing then salting two purple heirloom tomatoes to inhale on the spot, I picked out the biggest, heaviest, most ruby-red tomatoes I could find to make the mother of all fresh summer dishes – Pasta Pomodoro!
Fresh picked tomatoes are roughly chopped then simmered with fragrant basil leaves, shallots, and garlic then finished off with a big pat of salted butter (or Earth Balance to make this vegetarian meal vegan-friendly!) before being tossed with regular or gluten-free spaghetti. This meal is fresh and light – the flavors are too. I could go on but feel a plate of swirly saucy carbs pretty much speaks for itself!
Start by roughly chopping 4 large, very ripe tomatoes. These babies were picked just a few days ago and were incredibly juicy. Tip: store tomatoes on the counter, stem side down to keep them fresher longer.
You don’t have to be too precise when it comes to chopping the tomatoes – a rough chop should do it. Add the tomatoes plus any seeds and juices to a bowl then set aside.
Next saute 1 large minced shallot plus 4 minced garlic cloves in 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil for two minutes, then add the tomatoes, 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil, and a pinch of sugar. The sugar doesn’t make the sauce taste sweet at all – it will just help to balance all the flavors.
Simmer until the mixture reaches spaghetti sauce consistency – 20ish minutes or so depending on how juicy your tomatoes are, smashing the tomatoes against the side of the pan with a spoon or spatula every so often – then finish with pepper and TONS of salt, plus 2 Tablespoons butter or Earth Balance Vegan Butter (which is what I used so Lincoln could have some.) Like I said, I LOVE salt and fresh tomatoes so I added quite a bit!
Stir in another 2 Tablespoons chopped basil to give the sauce a burst of freshness then toss with cooked spaghetti and serve!
Pasta Pomodoro is the perfect recipe to highlight juicy, ripe summer tomatoes. This simple pasta dish is fresh and light!
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large shallot, minced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 large, very ripe tomatoes, chopped
- 1/4 cup packed fresh basil, chopped and divided
- pinch of sugar
- salt and pepper
- 2 Tablespoons butter (I used Earth Balance Vegan Butter)
- 1/2lb gluten-free spaghetti
- Heat extra virgin olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic then saute for two minutes. Add chopped tomatoes, half the basil, and the sugar then turn heat up slightly to bring to a boil. Turn heat back down to medium then simmer until desired consistency is reached, 20-30 minutes depending on how juicy your tomatoes are, smashing tomatoes against the side of the pan with a spatula every so often.
- Meanwhile bring a large pot of water to a boil then add a generous amount of salt. Add pasta then cook until al dente. Drain then return pasta to the pot to keep warm.
- Season sauce with pepper and lots of salt then stir in butter and remaining basil. Taste then add more salt or pepper if necessary and then mix with cooked spaghetti and serve.
Adapted from Food Network
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.
Spaghetti sauces are really hard to master, in my experience, but there is nothing wrong and everything right with this light mix of saucy summer ingredients. Enjoy, enjoy!