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Saturday, 07/26/2008 9:38:03 AM

Saturday, July 26, 2008 9:38:03 AM

Post# of 8711
What to do with all those cherry tomatoes...

Pasta With Cherry Tomatoes and Arugula
I’m a big fan of uncooked tomato sauces for my summer pastas. This one is very popular in the Southern Italian region of Puglia, and in my house right now, because my cherry tomato plants are producing lots of ripe tomatoes every day. Arugula adds not only wonderful flavor (all the more if you can find peppery wild arugula), but also a nutritional leafy greens punch.

1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved if small, quartered if large

1 plump garlic clove, minced or put through a press (more to taste)

Salt to taste (I like to use a very good coarse sea salt or fleur de sel for this)

1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar (optional)

1 cup arugula leaves, coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon slivered or chopped fresh basil

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

3/4 pound fusille, farfalle, or orecchiette

1/4 cup freshly grated ricotta salata or Parmesan (more to taste)

1. Combine the cherry tomatoes, garlic, salt, balsamic vinegar, arugula, basil, and olive oil in a wide bowl. Let sit for 15 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings.

2. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Add a generous amount of salt and the pasta. Cook al dente, until the pasta is firm to the bite. Drain, toss with the tomatoes, sprinkle on the cheese, and serve.

Yield: Makes 4 servings

Advance preparation: You can make the tomato and arugula mixture a few hours ahead.

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