Sunday, May 19, 2013

Fresh Tomato Pasta with Sauteed Scallions

Growing up in Youngstown, OH, which is in itself it's own Little Italy, I've become pretty picky when it comes to Italian cuisine.  When you're used to eating recipes that can be traced back to a someone's great-great-great-great grandmother in Sicily, you get pretty spoiled.  And that's not just in the restaurants, that's simply when you go over to your friends house after you've already eaten dinner, and their mom decides you're too skinny so she'll just whip up some sausage & peppers and maybe a few pizzas for you.  It really is quite amazing that I didn't keel over from heart failure by the time I hit 20, especially when I also had my other friends' Lebanese, Irish, Greek and Slovak moms stuffing me to the gills too.

Compounding my pickiness is my gluten-intolerance, so nearly all of my pasta consumption happens in my own home, made by my own hands.  But as much as I love to, I simply don't have the time to simmer sauce/gravy for hours before it's just right.  While some jarred sauces doctored up will do the trick, I still needed a quick and easy sauce from scratch.  And then I stumbled upon this delightful recipe for the freshest and simplest tomato sauce recipe I've ever had.  The Mister and I are so addicted that we're eating this at least once a week, and it's a great base for adding in other Crop Share veggies such as broccoli, eggplant, or zucchini.  Homemade sauce isn't just for Sundays any more!

Fresh Tomato Pasta with Sauteed Scallions

3 large tomatoes (I've been using the Ugly Ripe Heirlooms in our Produce Center)
1 bundle of scallions (can also use garlic scapes, the greens from the tops of growing garlic)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 2 Tbsp for pan
Pasta of your choosing
Salt & Pepper to taste

Begin boiling pasta water, and cook pasta according to package directions.

Dice all 3 tomatoes (no need to seed), and place 2 of them into a blender, reserving the 3rd for the skillet.  Dice scallions and place half into the blender with the tomatoes.  Add in 1/4 cup of olive oil and blend until fairly smooth.  Set aside for the moment.

In a medium skillet, heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil over medium high heat.  Add in the rest of the scallions and saute until they begin to slightly brown.  Add in your 3rd diced tomato, and cook for another additional 1-2 minutes.  Pour blended sauce into skillet and mix well with sauteed scallions and tomatoes.  Season to taste with salt and black pepper.  Pour over cooked pasta, mix to combine and let rest for about 3 minutes to allow sauce to set up.  Season again with salt & pepper if necessary.

This is a perfect base sauce, so get creative with it by adding in various vegetables and using different tomatoes.  I tried a mixture of yellow and heirloom tomatoes that was fantastic.

And of course...Mangia!  Mangia!

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