The discovery of a new dish does more for the happiness of mankind than the discovery of a star. -- Anthelme Brillat-Savarin --

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Garlic Pasta with Blistered Tomato Sauce

HOWDY friends!  I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted, but life is busy here in Zig Zag.  I have continued to try new recipes on a regular basis, but I just haven’t had time to stop and blog them.  I hope you are all well and happy, and too busy with good things like family & friends to spend much time on your computers too!

Anyway, I came across this recipe for Garlic Linguini with Blistered Tomato Sauce on Facebook last weekend, and knew I had to try it.  It came from Modern Mrs. Cleaver’s blog, so I knew it had to be good.  If you get a chance, scroll through her blog, you’ll find LOTS of yummy things there.

This recipe is VERY simple and easy, but it takes some time in the oven, so it's not a last-minute dish, but it's absolutely worth the wait!  As you’ll see, I was out of several ingredients, but I didn’t let that stop me.  I just substituted or left things out.  Don’t be afraid to do that my friends.  Wonderful things can be created that way! 

Garlic Pasta with Blistered Tomato Sauce

12 ounces dried linguine (I used fettucine, because I was out of linguine - just use whatever pasta you like)
1/4 cup olive oil  (I used extra virgin)
1/4 cup unsalted butter
6 cloves garlic, minced (I LOVE garlic, so I used an entire head!)
pinch red pepper flakes (I used about 1/4 teaspoon)
2 tablespoons parsley, finely minced (I didn’t have any parsley, so I just left it out)
salt & pepper, to taste
2 ounces shredded parmesan (again, I was out of this, so I just left it out…I really think I need to get to the grocery store!)
24 ounces tri-color sweet cherry tomatoes (I didn’t have the tri-color tomatoes, so I used a combination of grape tomatoes and sweet cherry tomatoes - I used one pkg of each)
1 large onion, sliced medium thick (I used a small sweet red onion - just found these recently, and they are sooooo good - and they add a beautiful color to anything you put them in!  It really adds a nice flavor, so if you have a really small onion use two!)
drizzle olive oil (again, I used extra virgin olive oil, but I misted everything with my Misto sprayer instead of drizzling - I can use less oil that way!)
salt/pepper (I don’t like to use too much salt, so I left this additional seasoning out)
fresh torn basil (the drought has gotten to my herb garden, so I didn’t have this either!  I used chopped, fresh chives instead - VERY good!)

Preheat oven to 400°F.
Place tomatoes and onion in a 9x13 baking dish and drizzle (or spray) with olive oil, then sprinkle on a little salt, and pepper.

Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the tomatoes are blistered and starting to burst. (I actually baked mine for about an hour to get a really yummy caramelization.  It takes some time, but it’s SOOOOO worth it!)  Set aside.

Near the end of the tomato roasting time, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. When the water is at a rapid boil, drop the linguine (or whatever pasta you’re using) in and cook to al dente (according to package directions).
(Tip:  Since this recipe involved a lot of garlic, I made things simple by using my élan garlic peeler.  If you've never tried one of these, it's a "miracle worker".  It makes peeling garlic super quick and easy!)

While the pasta cooks, heat the 1/4 cup olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper to the pan and cook 1 minute.  (I actually cooked this for 5 to 10 minutes over low heat.  Be careful to keep a close eye on it though, you don’t want your garlic to brown and get bitter!) Remove pan from the heat.

Drain pasta and return to the pot. Pour the butter mixture over top of the pasta and add the parmesan, parsley, and a pinch of salt and pepper to the pot. Toss to cover noodles with the butter and herbs.

Place the pasta in a large serving bowl, top with the blistered tomato and onion mixture, scatter torn basil (or chives) over top and garnish with a drizzle of olive oil and a grate of fresh parmesan (in my case it was good even without it!).

The rich tomato flavor in this dish is hard to describe, but absolutely delicious!  I think next time, I’ll just leave the garlic in cloves (or half-cloves) and bake it along with the tomatoes instead of cooking it in the olive oil butter mixture.  The whole thing was a bit too oily for me.  Don’t get me wrong, it was delicious, but I try to eat a little healthier these days, and that was quite a bit of oil/butter.  I did like the olive oil/butter combination though.  I’ll probably just add a little butter (about 2 Tbsp or so) to my baking pan, and just do it all in the oven instead of on the stove top.  It won’t really have a “sauce” that way, but the flavors are so pronounced and delicious I really don’t think it needs it.  If you pasta is too dry, that can be fixed prior to serving with a quick drizzle (or spray) of olive oil.

Give this recipe a try, and don’t forget to go check out Modern Mrs. Cleaver’s version.
If you’ve never tried roasting tomatoes, DO IT TODAY!!  You’ll be so glad you did.  Now that I’ve tried it, I’m looking forward to experimenting with them more.  Keep your eyes on my blog for more yummy stuff to come!

Happy cooking my friends…


  1. Replies
    1. It REALLY is good. Definitely worth the time it takes in the oven!