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Roasted Garlic and Grape Tomato Pasta with Basil and Arugula

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I decided upon this pasta dish by Rachel Ray. My decision came about only after finding a combination of arugula and mustard greens at the local farmers market yesterday. This recipe was in keeping with what we have on hand at this time of year. I should have remembered to pierce the skins of the grape tomatoes because I heard many popping sounds coming from within the depths of the oven.

This pasta dish was simple to prepare with a depth and smoothness of flavour that only roasted tomatoes and garlic can provide. The arugula and mustard greens gave it a little added nip.

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Roasted Garlic and Grape Tomato Pasta with Basil and Arugula 1 Picture

Ingredients

  • 1 pound penne rigate
  • 2 pints grape tomatoes
  • 8 to 10 cloves garlic, cracked but left in skins
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus some, for drizzling
  • 1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, a few generous handfuls
  • 1 cup basil leaves, about 20, torn or shredded
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped arugula

Details

Servings 4
Adapted from morethanburnttoast.blogspot.com

Preparation

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Place the grape tomatoes on a cookie sheet with the garlic. Coat the tomatoes and cracked garlic with 3 to 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil and season with lots of salt and pepper. Roast 20 minutes.

After you put the tomatoes and garlic in the oven, place a pot of water on the stove and bring to a boil for the pasta. Salt water, add pasta and cook to just-shy of al dente, maybe 9-10 minutes. It needs to have a real bite left to it because it will sit in the sauce for 2 minutes later on and continue to cook. Heads up: you will need 2 ladles of starchy cooking water just before draining, about 1 -1/2 cups.

After 20 minutes, remove the roasted garlic from the skins and mash into a paste with the side of your knife. Transfer the garlic paste to the bottom of a pasta bowl. Using a fork, mix the garlic into 2 ladles of starchy pasta cooking water, about 1 -1/2 cups. Add the tomatoes to the bowl and mash them with a potato masher until a sauce forms and tomatoes are well combined with garlic broth. Add penne, grated cheese, arugula and basil and toss a minute or 2 to allow the pasta to soak up flavors.

Serve, drizzled with a little extra olive oil and/or more cheese.

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