Italy on a plate
Living in London and dreaming of Italy: this is how I would describe myself if I would only have a few words to do it! There is something about Italy that makes it so dear to my heart. It could be for its long sandy beaches and the blue seas, or the sound of busy Rome on a summer evening, or perhaps the taste of a Spritz Veneziano sipped over a hidden canal, or for the taste of their simple and still elegant and flavorsome food. Or maybe is for all of these together and even more: the loud and lovely people, the beautiful scenery changing with every step you take and the fabulous wine that you can find all around the country. How can you not love it?
Today’s recipe is a celebration of what Italy means to me on the matter of food. There are lots of simple dishes in Italian cuisine, and many of them are popular around the world just for their simplicity. This simple baby tomato and basil spaghetti is only one of them. I love it for its elegant simplicity and for its simple flavor of tomatoes and basil with just a hint of garlic.
Tomato and basil is a classic combination in Italian cuisine, and although I usually like playing around with ingredients and getting out of patterns, sometimes I feel that I need to keep it simple. There is nothing that I would change about this dish: it’s classic, it’s simple, it’s the mere definition of “less is more”. And it is perfect for a hot summer’s day, when you don’t want to keep you stove on for more than 15 minutes.
Baby tomato and basil spaghetti
- 300 grams of fresh spaghetti
- 150 grams of red and yellow santini tomatoes
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- some fresh basil
- Maldon salt to taste
- freshly cracked black pepper
- Put a medium sized pot with 2 litres of water and a teaspoon of salt to boil.
- Cut the tomatoes in half and crush the garlic cloves with the back of a knife.
- While the water is heating, put the oil in a large pan (I use a wok) and allow it to heat.
- When the oil is hot, put the garlic cloves in the pan and leave them there for a about two minutes, just enough to give its flavor to the oil and then take them out.
- At this moment, the water should be boiling. Add the fresh spaghetti and let them boil for 3 minutes.
- At the same time, add the tomatoes in the pan and gently toss them in the olive oil.
- When the spaghetti are done, transfer them into the pan and add a tablespoon or two of the water in which they have boiled. Toss everything together for about two minutes.
- Transfer them onto two plates, season with roughly chopped basil and add some black pepper.
- Serve hot, along with a glass of your favourite wine.
I wish you a lovely weekend and I hope you will enjoy this baby tomato and basil spaghetti!