Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Spicy Tomato Pasta

Don't you just want to scarf down this bowl of all things delicious in the world (i.e. tomatoes and garlic)?! My mom and I look forward to the couple months out of the year during which tomatoes are not only edible but completely glorious. I know some people abhor tomatoes (ahem, dad, Zach), but I am convinced it's because they've only ever eaten bad tomatoes. Same goes for fish, mushrooms, and everything else except prime rib. Who has ever heard of a good prime rib?

Back in Atlanta, Craig and I were brainstorming about how we could impress his friends with a stunning meal. Had to be summery. Had to be awesome. And this was no time to bust out an improvised dinner of scorched squid salad with wheatberries for the first time on unsuspecting neighbors--though, come to think of it, that would have been fun.

My mom discovered this recipe in Martha Stewart Living several years ago (while I was living in Kirksville) and called me directly to share it. Mom made it every day for a week straight. And I followed suit. All elements in this meal bring out the flavor of the tomato: the chili-infused oil and the garlic add spiciness, the basil and oregano give it whatever herbs give so I'll use a generic term like "aroma," and the parmesan adds salt and creaminess and the overall awesomeness that is parmesan cheese.

We also made the watermelon-tomato-bacon salad--I've made it three times in less than a month and my mom is still convinced it's weird (my plan is to convert her with a surprise attack on Labor Day).
To amp up the meat we had the bacon for the salad and salami with baguettes and soft goat cheese. We made the Winning Hearts and Minds Cake for dessert and Biz and Boone brought homemade peanut butter ice cream (woah!). We spent the remainder of the night playing Apples to Apples until I was practically falling asleep on the floor and until Craig won.
Pasta with Tomato Sauce: from Marth Stewart Living 1 cup olive oil 2 1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes 6 medium tomatoes, diced 4 garlic cloves, chopped 1 tablespoon dried oregano 1 tablespoon dried basil or 1 cup fresh basil kosher salt pepper 1 pound spaghetti or fusilli pasta parmesan cheese for serving At least two hours before serving, make pepper-infused oil. In a small bowl or glass, combine red pepper flakes and 1/2 cup olive oil and let stand at room temperature for at least two hours and up to two days.
In a large bowl, combine diced tomatoes, garlic, oregano, basil, salt, pepper and plain olive oil. Toss to coat. Let stand at room temperature for 1 to 8 hours.
Fifteen minutes before serving, bring a pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta according to directions. Drain and toss with tomato sauce. Serve with parmesan cheese and drizzle with chili-infused oil.


Zach said...

Are you saying everything in the world is good except prime rib? That's crazy.

Anonymous said...

I lost that recipe so I'm glad you have it. I'm off to the veggie stand to buy more tomatoes since mine are so slow to ripen. Any good recipes for green tomatoes?

Lainey Seyler said...

do you mean actual green tomatoes (as in fried green tomatoes) or unripe tomatoes?