These two pasta dishes from Ina Garten and Samin Nosrat should not be missing from your summer menu.
Ina Garten’s Summer Garden Pasta is one of the best “Barefoot Contessa” recipes we’ve ever made.
And Samin Nosrat’s “tomato candy” pasta has Michelle Obama’s stamp of approval.
Summer is coming and tomato season is back, which means it’s the perfect time to make these two mouthwatering pastas.
Insider’s food reporters Anneta Konstantinides and Rachel Askinasi both love making pasta. And when the temperatures rise and summer hits, these recipes from Ina Garten and Samin Nosrat are the ones they love to share with family and friends.
Both pastas have a unique twist that enhances the flavor of the tomatoes. Better yet? They only require a few simple ingredients and are super easy to make.
The summer garden pasta is a favorite of “Barefoot Contessa,” while Nosrat’s pasta has Michelle Obama’s approval.
Garten has shared dozens of pasta recipes (Anneta made nine† But last year, Garten revealed that: the summer garden pasta was her absolute favourite†
Rachel discovered Nosrat’s recipe while watching “Waffles + Mochi,” a children’s program on Netflix produced by Michelle and Barack Obama. Nosrat was featured in the very first episode, teaching the show’s eponymous characters how to make easy pasta for her.
Garten’s summer garden pasta only needs a few simple ingredients.
To prepare her delicious dish for six you will need:
1 pound angel hair pasta
4 pint cherry tomatoes
1½ cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese (plus extra for serving)
18 large basil leaves (plus extra to serve)
6 cloves of garlic
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
You also need “good” olive oil, a description Garten explains on her “Barefoot Contessa” website†
“By ‘good’ olive oil, I mean buy the best oil your budget will allow,” she writes. “It certainly doesn’t have to be the most expensive! I use California Olio Santo olive oil because it’s flavorful, fruity, and not heavy.”
First, Anneta prepared her tomatoes and herbs.
She halved the cherry tomatoes, julienned the basil leaves and chopped the garlic.
Anneta then threw everything into a bowl of olive oil.
She added the cherry tomatoes, garlic, and basil first, then sprinkled everything with salt (Garten recommends 1 teaspoon), the red pepper flakes, and a few turns of freshly ground black pepper.
Anneta then added half a cup of olive oil and covered the bowl with plastic wrap. Since the bowl needs to stay at room temperature, leave it on the counter for four hours.
When the tomato mixture was ready, Anneta started cooking her angel hair pasta.
She brought a large pot of water to the boil with a drizzle of olive oil and two tablespoons of salt.
Then she threw in the pasta and made sure to keep an eye on it. Because angel hair is so thin, it cooks much faster than most types of pasta. After just five minutes, the angel hair was perfectly al dente.
Anneta emptied the pasta and tossed it in a bowl with the tomato mixture. She added the Parmesan cheese and some extra basil before mixing everything up.
Garten’s Summer Garden Pasta is one of the best “Barefoot Contessa” recipes Anneta has ever made.
From pasta and cocktails until Corn bread and dessertAnneta has made dozens of Garten recipes. But the summer garden pasta is easily one of her favorites.
First, there is the incredible scent, which reminded Anneta of fresh bruschetta. And the tomatoes were really out of this world. Marinating them for four hours gave the tomatoes a rich flavor that was unforgettable. They matched perfectly with the fluffy angel hair, leaving the paste wonderfully light – just what you want in the summer.
Anneta has always favored heavy pasta with red sauce, but this recipe showed her that you can get a lot of flavor with just a few ingredients. Plus, Garten’s summer garden pasta is so easy to put together. It’s a recipe that Anneta recommends to almost everyone because it’s simple and vegetarian-friendly.
Check out the full recipe for Ina Garten’s Summer Garden Pasta here.
Nosrat’s tomato candy pasta recipe calls for seven ingredients, including salt.
To make this recipe you will need:
1 pound (450 grams) short pasta (penne, farfalle, rigatoni, or orecchiette will work)
2 pints (800 grams) cherry tomatoes, stems removed
¼ cup (60 milliliters) extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon sugar
Fine sea salt
3 ounces (85 grams) freshly grated Parmesan cheese, to make about 1 cup grated
16 fresh basil leaves
For the cheese, Nosrat says to try and get Parmigiano Reggiano from Italy because “it’s extra tasty!” If you can’t find it, or you’re just not a fan, the chef suggests swapping it for Asiago, Pecorino-Romano, Ricotta Salata, sheep’s milk feta, or dollops of fresh ricotta.
The first thing Rachel did was nibble on her tomatoes.
The “Salt, Fat, Sour, Heat” host says to line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place an oven rack in the middle position.
Separately, Rachel followed the instructions to mix the tomatoes with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Then she added the sugar and half a teaspoon of salt before gently shaking again.
She arranged the tomatoes on the baking sheet in a single layer, put them in the oven — which she’d preheated to 225 degrees Fahrenheit — and set the timer for five hours.
Check the tomatoes every 30 minutes or so, Nosrat says, to rotate the pan, for even cooking and to make sure the tomatoes don’t stick. These will stay in the oven until they look semi-dried and shriveled and until they start to taste like candy, which will be around five hours.
After the tomatoes are candied, they should look shriveled but still colorful.
When it comes to this dish, Rachel thought the patience really paid off. She said the candied tomatoes were bitter, sour, and sweet, and they made the glands in the back of her jaw tingle.
She described them as sticky in some places and bursting with juice in others. And while she said they were tasty, Rachel recommended taking them out of the oven a little earlier than she did, as some of them were almost completely dried out.
The perfectly candied tomatoes, in her opinion, had the taste of sun-dried tomatoes with the texture of roasted tomatoes.
Once the tomatoes are cooked, the rest of the preparation is quick and seamless.
For her dish, Rachel chose to use farfalle pasta. She boiled it in extremely salty water, following Nosrat’s instructions.
While the pasta was cooking for about six minutes, Rachel grated her cheese and tore the fresh basil leaves by hand.
When the pasta was cooked al dente, she combined it with the cheese, tomatoes, and olive oil. Nosrat recommends adding the basil last. In doing so, Rachel found that this is an important note that helps keep the herb fresh rather than wilting under the heat of the pasta.
Rachel also found it helpful to drain the pasta just briefly, leaving a little of the starchy cooking water. She said the water made the cheese stick to every nook and cranny of each bow-tie-shaped noodle.
Rachel thought this dish had perfectly balanced flavors and was very easy to prepare.
Rachel said she added the torn basil right before taking her first bite, and encourages everyone to do the same at home. She said it tasted fresh, light, and perfectly salty, and the fragrant basil leaves balanced out the intense flavors of the tomato candy.
An important part of this dish came from the feathery curls cheese, which Rachel said doesn’t weigh this dish as much as melted mozzarella would have.
There are several components of this dish that make it perfect for preparing meals or serving at a dinner party. You can prepare this meal in batches by cooking the tomatoes ahead of time and setting the basil aside until ready to serve.
No matter how many servings you’re cooking (this recipe serves four as is), Rachel says she’d recommend making extra tomato candies, as it would pair well with plenty of other dishes.
To preserve the tomato candies, Nosrat recommends soaking them in a jar of olive oil for up to six weeks. For longer term storage, you can also freeze the candy in a single layer on a baking sheet first and then transfer it to a freezer bag once frozen, where it can be stored for up to six months.
Check out the full recipe for Samin Nosrat’s pasta with cherry tomato “candy” here.
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