Baked Roma tomatoes and fresh basil make a savory sauce for this special spaghetti dish. The sweetness of the tomatoes is intensified by cooking them over high heat for an extended time period. Fresh ingredients are always best when serving pasta.
12 medium-size form-ripe pear-shaped 9Roma-type) tomatoes (about 1 ¼ lbs. total)
Salt and Pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup chopped parsley
½ cup olive oil
1 pound dry spaghetti
2 Tbsp. butter or margarine, at room temperature
½ cup whole fresh basil leaves or 2 Tbsp. dry basil
Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Cut tomatoes in half lengthwise; set, cut sides up, in a shallow 9×13-inch baking pan or disk.
- Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.
- Mix garlic, 1/3 cup of the parsley, and 2 Tbsp. of the oil; pat mixture over cut sides of tomatoes.
- Drizzle with 2 Tsp. more oil.
- Bake, uncovered, in a 425 degree oven until browned on top (55 to 70 minutes; pan juices may become very dark).
- When tomatoes are almost done, in a 6-8 quart pan, cook spaghetti in 4 wuarts boiling water just until tender to bite (10-12 minutes); or cook according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, in a warm large serving bowl, place butter or margarine, remaining parsley, remaining ¼ cup oil, basil, and 4 of the baked tomato halves.
- Remove and discard most of the skin from the 4 halves; coarsely mash halves.
- Drain spaghetti well; add to tomato mixture and mix lightly; using 2 forks.
- Add remaining baked tomato halves and pan juices.
- Mix gently; season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Serve with cheese, if desired.
Food Mingle Blog Alternatives and Substitutions:
- I used the fresh basil leaves, rather than the dried basil, to give this dish a fresh taste.
- Definitely go with the grated cheese on top to add move flavor.
Yield: 6 servings
Adapted From: “Fresh Ways with Pasta” Sunset Publishing Company, Menlo Park, CA, 1993, and http://www.realsimple.com