Monday, July 26, 2010

Summer Pasta: Raw Tomato Sauce

One of my favorite dishes for tomato season, which is glorious full swing here in New York, is Pamela Sherrid's Summer Pasta, which I have been making since I read about it in 2007 in a Times article by Amanda Hesser.

Summer Pasta 1

It's a leisurely recipe that involves steeping garlic and basil all day, then adding chopped tomatoes a couple hours before serving. You cook a bag of pasta, strain it and throw in on top of the raw tomato sauce, and then top the pasta with cubed mozzarella. It all gets tossed together to form the perfect combination of hot pasta and pasta salad, but it's not worth making unless the tomatoes are ripe and in season.

Summer Pasta 2

Bittman's got a similar recipe in How to Cook Everything for Raw Tomato Sauce, but it takes far less time: you basically mash together all of the ingredients, then top it with pasta. Mozzarella isn't in his recipe, though it is in a list following the recipe of suggested add-ins. I goofed and forgot to get fresh basil at the market, so I used pesto from Russo's on 11th Street in the East Village--by far the best storebought pesto around. The tomatoes, green-orange-red cherry tomatoes from Lani's Farm at the Union Square Greenmarket, made the dish. I added a healthy amount of parmesan cheese for good measure.

Summer Pasta 3

Honestly, both of these are great summertime pasta dishes, and it would be very hard to go wrong with either of them. Sherrid's recipe can be made last minute, and Bittman's could be made well in advance if you liked. Either way, the unfuckwithable combination of basil, tomato and mozzarella shines. With tomatoes like the ones we're seeing at the Greenmarket of late, you can't go wrong.

Recipe Redux: Pamela Sherrid's Summer Pasta [nytimes]
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