When tomatoes are in harvest I am always looking for ways to enjoy them. You can roast any fresh tomato. Roma tomatoes are great because they are meaty and have less moisture. I am loving the sweet grape or cherry tomatoes right now.
Roast the cherry tomatoes and some smashed garlic cloves drizzled with olive oil for about 30 minutes. They will caramelize a bit and stay juicy. Toss with fresh basil, pitted kalamata olives, and lots of freshly shaved parmesan cheese. The real secret to making this pasta perfect is to get a balance between pasta and sauce. The pasta is the main ingredient! Be sure the spaghetti is cooked to just al dente – “to the tooth”. I tend to go heavy on the red pepper flakes and black pepper. Adjust the seasonings to your liking.
Simple Spaghetti with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, Olives & Basil
Spaghetti with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, Olives & Basil is super easy and perfect for a light summer dinner! You can roast any fresh tomato. Sweet grape or cherry tomatoes are usually available year-round. When Roma tomatoes are in season, they are great because they are meaty and have less moisture. You can adjust the spiciness of the pasta by adding more or less red pepper flakes.
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt for tomatoes + 2 tablespoons salt for pasta water
- 1 pound spaghetti pasta
- 2 pints cherry tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil + more for finishing pasta
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
- ½ cup pitted Kalamata olives
- Pinch of red pepper flakes (or to taste)
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves, torn into bite size pieces.
- ½ cup shaved parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Cut tomatoes in half. Spread tomatoes and smashed garlic cloves in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with a silicon mat or parchment paper. Drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 teaspoon of salt and black pepper over the tomatoes. Toss the tomatoes and garlic around a bit to evenly coat with oil. Bake for 20 - 30 minutes or until the tomatoes are slightly caramelized and the you can start to smell the garlic aroma.
- In a large stockpot, water and add 2 tablespoons salt and bring to a boil. Add pasta and cook al dente - about 6 - 7 minutes. The only way to really know is to test a strand at 6 minutes. Taste again at 7 minutes. Drain and transfer to a warm pasta bowl. Try to time the pasta and the tomatoes to be ready at the same time.
- Immediately add the roasted tomatoes, olives, basil leaves, red pepper flakes and a drizzle more of olive oil on the pasta and toss. Add the parmesan cheese and toss again.
- Serve immediately.