This is summer fare at its best: easy, light and not too hot. The angel hair is delicate enough that you won’t feel weighed down, even though you just ate a big bowl of pasta. The mozzarella is creamy. The basil is plentiful and fresh. And the Cherry Tomato Confit, well let’s just call that tomato candy. I don’t know the science behind it, but when you roast those little tomatoes slowly in olive oil with a little garlic and thyme and a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper, they pop out of their skins and turn sweeter than you can imagine a tomato tasting. Really. I might suggest doubling the Cherry Tomato Confit recipe, because you will want to steal a few before tossing them into the pasta, and keeping the extras at the ready in the fridge will make future you super happy.
Especially tomorrow night when you’re swooning over the bruschetta that took you two minutes to put together.
½ pound angel hair pasta
4 ounces fresh mozzarella, cubed
½ cup fresh basil leaves, cut into chiffonade
Cherry Tomato Confit (recipe below)
Sprinkle of red pepper flakes
¼ cup grated parmesan
Cook the pasta in salted boiling water with a splash of olive oil for 4 minutes. Drain the pasta and place it in a large bowl. Toss gently with the mozzarella and basil. Pour the Cherry Tomato Confit over the pasta, including the oil in the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle the red pepper flakes and parmesan cheese over the top, then drizzle a little more olive oil over everything. This is good warm or at room temperature.
Makes 4 bowls of pasta.
Cherry Tomato Confit
1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes
¼ cup olive oil
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
2 garlic cloves, smashed
2 sprigs fresh thyme
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Put the tomatoes in an 8-by-8 glass baking dish. Drizzle with the oil, salt, and pepper, and mix with your hands to coat the tomatoes in oil and seasoning. Nestle the garlic and thyme among the tomatoes.
Roast 2 hours. Use the tomatoes with their oil tossed in pasta, on grilled chicken or as a topping for bruschetta.