Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Cherry tomato pasta salad

Cherry tomatoes pack more flavor—salt, sugar, savory—into one bite than many of their larger cousins. You can slow roast them until they resemble candy, chop them up with fresh herbs, or just pop them in your mouth straight from the vine.

Unlike my West coast counterpart, I live in an apartment in Brooklyn without this mysterious area known as a "yard." However, this summer I embraced container gardening, growing cherry tomatoes and herbs out of plastic milk cartons or old olive oil tins. My bounty, pictured above, has been harvested (which took all of three minutes--such a farmer!)

Craving a pasta salad (I am game for anything that can be eaten very COLD these days), I put together the following:

14 or so cherry tomatoes, cut in quarters
sprinkle with good olive oil
A handful of black or kalamata olives
zest of one lemon

Add about 2-3 cups of cooked pasta. I like fusilli for pasta salads.
Dress with olive or walnut oil and a good vinegar, I used sherry.
Chop up a handful of fresh basil leaves.

Mix all together and chill until cold. Serve with some ricotta salata or other hard salty cheese (asiago, parmesan) shaved on top and a glass of very cold white wine.

Enjoy your summer evening.