Friday, August 19, 2011

Spaghetti alla Checca

I was inspired today by the fabulous basil microgreens from Silver Lake Farms and the amazing assortment of tomatoes in our box. Spaghetti alla Checca is a simple and delicious way to use late summer's abundance of tomatoes. This dish is made with just a few ingredients, so use the very best olive oil, garlic, basil, tomatoes, and pasta you can find. I used red tomatoes, but you can use any color fresh, ripe tomatoes.

Spaghetti works well in this dish, but you can substitute many other pasta shapes. Farfalle work nicely, as do linguine and angel hair.

Spaghetti alla Checca

Assemble the following ingredients:

1 lb dry spaghetti
4-6 T extra virgin olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 lb fresh tomatoes, chopped
handful of basil microgreens or 1/4 C fresh basil, chopped
salt and pepper
grated parmesan cheese, optional

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the spaghetti 1 minute less than the package directions indicate.

2. While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic and cook until aromatic and slightly golden. [If the pasta isn't done yet, turn off the heat until the pasta is ready. Turn the heat on again before adding the pasta in Step 4 below.]

3. Just before draining the pasta, remove about 1/2 C of the pasta cooking water and set it aside.

4. Drain the pasta and add it and the pasta water to the skillet with the garlic. Cook on medium heat until, stirring to coat the pasta, until the water is gone. Add the chopped tomatoes and stir to distribute.

5. Remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Then stir in the basil microgreens or chopped fresh basil. Garnish with microgreens and serve warm or at room temperature.

Today's bounty included:

From Underwood Family Farms: yellow and green sweet bell peppers, red and green leaf lettuce, Japanese turnips, mizuna, bok choy, sharlyn and ambrosia melons, avocado, zucchini, Cherokee tomatoes, garlic, and collard greens.

From Sage Mountain Farm: Easter radishes, patty pan squash, heirloom tomatoes, and Swiss chard.

From Sweet Tree Farms: Peaches, pluots, and heirloom tomatoes.

And from Silver Lake Farms: Basil and mustard microgreens and sweet green sherry tomatoes.



1 comment:

  1. Hmmm, sounds yummy! I wanna try making that spaghetti alla checca at home by next weekend. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

    Cassy from Acoustic Guitar Lessons