Spaghetti with Fresh Burst Cherry Tomato Sauce
Hello world! As this is my debut post I just wanted to introduce myself for a moment. My name is Anisha and there are 2 things I truly love in this world, the first is animals, all kinds and every kind, I think I should clarify, so there is no confusion, since this is a food blog, I am referring to LIVE animals. I have a 6 1/2-year-old rescue labrador retriever mix who is the love of my life and the king of my heart, and a rescue orange tabby who is the queen of my heart. I also have a husband who has some part of my heart too, but he knows he comes second to my fur babies! There was never any confusion there. =) My second love is cooking! I cook ALL sorts of dishes. I was born and raised in NJ so I am very acquainted with all sorts of different cultures and cuisines. I am completely fascinated by new dishes, ingredients and spices and flavors. I also happen to have been born Indian so I also do a lot of Indian cooking, but my recipe index is such an equal mish-mash of many different cultural cuisines. I hope that you look forward to seeing more of my recipes! Oh, also even though my blog is called Salty Over Sweet, since normally I prefer to eat savory food over sweet food, I actually do a LOT of baking and dessert making, so there will be a lot of sweet stuff featured here also. I mostly make the sweet stuff for sharing, and as I’m sure my husband would tell you, to make him fat (even though he is quite lean). 😉
This is what the pan should look like when you first add the tomatoes.
Now to get to the good stuff! My first recipe that I am featuring here on my blog is one of my favorite go to’s for when I don’t really feel like making anything too complicated but am craving something nice and savory. I first started making this dish many years ago when I was still living with my parents after graduating from college. My mom had a subscription to a local Organic CSA (Community Sourced Agriculture). If you have never heard of CSA’s before and like to support local farms, and get freshly picked fruits and veggies I would highly recommend visiting this link to learn more about them and find one near you! Each farm works a little differently so you would have to see what is available around you. The farm that my mom was a part of Cherry Grove Organic Farm in Princeton, NJ, in the late summer and fall gave my mom more tomatoes and hot peppers than she knew what do with every week. My mom mostly cooks exclusively Indian food, and her dishes are very tomato and pepper heavy so to have so much extra was insane. That’s where I came in! I was in no way going to let those tomatoes and peppers go to waste. This recipe came to be by just throwing a bunch of stuff in a pan and hoping for the best! Boy am I glad it happened though, I cannot tell you how many times I have made this since then, there are some weeks when I will make this for myself almost everyday. I have tried many variations of this recipe but the one posted here is the one I always seem to come back to, feel free to use this as a base to add more vegetables, herbs and try different pastas if you so choose. I have only ever made this recipe for myself during lunch time, while my husband is at work. (It’s not the type of dish that he would enjoy), so I only have the recipe for a single serving. But I am positive that you can easily double or quadruple the recipe to accommodate more people. All of the measurements are loose so don’t stress out if you have less or more of anything, it’s a VERY forgiving recipe. If you live in the north this recipe is really great for the summer/fall time since tomatoes are in season then! I live in South Florida now, so it seems that its summer all the time these days, my seasons have all blended into each other at this point I can never tell what time of year it is anymore, there’s only hot and HOTTER. Regardless, this sauce definitely comes out best when the tomatoes are vine ripened and in season.
This is what the sauce should look like after the tomatoes have cooked down and it is now time to add the butter.
My recipe uses spaghetti because there is no day in my life that I have ever been able to say no to long noodles. It does not matter what cuisine it is, if there are long noodles you have got me hooked. Spaghetti, Lo-Mein, Ramen, Pho and so much more, I can literally just survive on noodles. I am sure other varieties of pasta may also go well with this, but to be honest I will never not use spaghetti in this dish. =)
This is the sauce cooking with the Spaghetti on high heat.
I know it’s a little weird, there are no herbs in this dish. It’s not like I don’t use herbs in my cooking. I mean I have a whole garden full of fresh herbs right outside my house on my patio. I don’t know why, but personally I have never felt like they were necessary in this particular dish. This dish really highlights the flavor of garlic and tomato. You should absolutely add herbs if you think my lack of herbs is crazy. I’m sure fresh chopped basil, and/or oregano would go great in here. You can add those at any point during the sauce recipe, the flavors will be different depending on at which point you choose to add the herbs.
All done and ready to eat!
If you like salty food, this dish is definitely for you, between the salt that we add to the sauce, the pasta water, the salted butter, and the salty cheese, the savoriness of salt really amplifies all the other flavors in this sauce which mainly consist of tomato, garlic and hot pepper. If you are more sensitive to salt levels (as my husband is) you can always start out with less salt in the beginning and grate some fresh salt on top if you find at the end there is less than what you prefer.
All done and ready to eat!
I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do! =)
- * 4.8-5oz - Spaghetti
- * 1 1/2 - Medium Tomatoes (Any Variety will work)
- * Handful - Cherry Tomatoes
- * 3 Cloves - Garlic
- * 2 - Small Chili Peppers (if you like spicy) (Optional)
- * 1 Tbsp - Cooking Olive Oil
- * 1/2 Tbsp - Salted Butter
- * Fresh Grated Parmigiano Reggiano (Keep a block handy for the end) (Optional)
- * 1/4 Cup - Pasta Water
- * Salt and Pepper to Taste
- Put a large pot of water on the stove on high. I don't like to wait for my largest pot to boil water just for one serving of noodles, so I use a 3 qt pot and just stir it often.
- Wait until it is boiling, then add enough salt to make the water taste like the ocean (I just pour salt out of the spout for about a second, its probably a couple tablespoons worth).
- Once the salt is added, add in the spaghetti and cook following directions. I prefer my spaghetti a little bit softer, so I cook it an extra minute or 2 more than the suggestions on the box, but you know how you like your pasta. It will cook another minute or so in the sauce, so just make sure you cook it a little bit under what you prefer.
- While the water is coming to a boil for the Spaghetti we can start on the sauce.
- Put a medium sized saute pan on the stove on medium low heat, add a tablespoon of cooking Olive Oil.
- Peel and chop up the garlic cloves until they are minced fine.
- The Pan should be warm by now, add your chopped up garlic to the warm oil and take the pan off of the heat, let the garlic sit in the warm/hot oil while we chop up the tomatoes.
- Remove the top of the tomato where the stem came from, and dice 1 1/2 medium sized tomatoes.
- Place all diced tomatoes into pan with warm oil and garlic make sure you collect all the tomato juices from the cutting board also and put that in the pan, we are going to reduce it and create a lot of flavor. You can put the pan back on medium heat now.
- If you like spicy food, while the tomatoes are cooking on the stove, chop up 2 small hot pepper or 1 large hot pepper of any kind into small pieces, I prefer Thai Chillies but it really doesn't matter, any spicy pepper will get the job done. Add the chopped up pepper to the tomatoes in the pan.
- Add about a 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper, or grate some fresh pepper on top and mix in.
- Now we let the tomatoes cook and dissolve into a sauce.
- Make sure you move everything around once in a while. If medium seems too hot you can always reduce it to medium low, every stove is different so you will need to judge your stove for yourself. The goal here is the cook the tomatoes in its own juices and olive oil so that it melts into a very thick sauce.
- Once all the moisture has almost left the pan, and everything is looking more oily, take the sauce off of the heat, the cherry tomatoes should also have cracked or burst by this point. If some of them have not, I highly recommend pushing a fork through them to let some steam out, to avoid a burned tongue later when you are eating.
- Since you are still either waiting for the water to finish boiling or for the spaghetti to finish cooking by this time, you can wait 2 or 3 minutes for the pan to cool a little bit.
- After the pan has cooled a little, add in the butter letting it naturally melt into the warm sauce, as its melting mix it in to combine. This gives the sauce a really nice flavor and a really nice gloss.
- If you like cheesy pasta you can also grate about a tablespoon of fresh parmigiano reggiano on top at this point, since it will mix into the sauce.
- Most likely you are just finishing up boiling the spaghetti by this point so just let the sauce sit off the heat until the spaghetti is ready.
- Once the spaghetti is ready, DO NOT drain it. We want to use the pasta water in this sauce, so just use a fork or something similar to pull the spaghetti out of the pot of water and into sauce pan. Once all the spaghetti is out, pour about 1/4 cup of pasta water into the pan to start.
- Turn the Stove onto Medium High heat, and toss the spaghetti and sauce together. I use a fork to do this, and help incorporate the sauce into the spaghetti.
- Keep mixing it around and cooking it over the heat until you can see that there is just a little bit if liquid left behind when you move the spaghetti in the pan.
- At this point take the pan off the heat and grate some parmigiano reggiano on top.
- Pour the spaghetti out into a plate or bowl, and top with more parmigiano reggiano and freshly grated pepper.
- Enjoy =)
- *This recipe will work perfectly fine without the cheese, or the hot peppers. The cheese just helps the sauce stick better to the spaghetti when you add it before the pasta, and provides a really nice flavor. The hot peppers are only good if you enjoy spicy food.
- *I have made this recipe without the cherry tomatoes too many times. They are a really beautiful addition, but not at all necessary. If you do not have cherry tomatoes, then just add 2 full medium sized tomatoes instead.
- *This quantity would also work as a great side dish for 2 people. I don't eat meat, but if you had a main protein, this would be a great side dish.
Here are some links for some products that I think you may find relevant or helpful to make this recipe! =)
This is the link for the sea salt that I use to make this recipe. I really like the rough ground salt with the fresh tomato sauce.
Dean Jacob’s Himalayan Pink Salt ~ 7.5 oz.
Here is the link for a microplane grater that works great to grate hard cheeses like parmesan cheese.
OXO Good Grips Grater
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