Pasta With Fresh Tomatoes, Arugula & Parmesan Cheese

This is one of those dishes you only want to make when you have very ripe, sweet tomatoes so it is perfect in the summer when we have an abundance of fresh locally grown produce. Pachino tomatoes are from Sicily, and are a variety of cherry tomato that is delicious and sweet but not always easy to find. I recreated this dish at home using cherry tomatoes from our garden and it was just as delicious. If you were using larger tomatoes, I’d suggest peeling and seeding them, but cherry tomatoes are so tender that the skins will meld into the sauce. We are fortunate to have access to crisp, peppery baby arugula that I leave whole to be tossed with the pasta just before eating, but if you can only find the larger cultivated arugula, I’d chop it coarsely before adding it to the pasta. We use Pecorino cheese much more commonly on pasta here in Umbria than we do Parmesan, but you can use either one depending on your preference. Strangozzi is one of the most commonly used variety of pasta used in Umbria as shown in the photo, and is a square cut pasta rather than rounded as spaghetti is. You can however use any long pasta of choice.

 

  • Arugula belongs to the dark green leafy vegetables family known for its heart-protective and cancer-protective properties.
  • Tomatoes are a source of vitamin A, vitamin C, dietary fiber and a great source of lycopene, a powerful antioxidant.

 

Pasta With Fresh Tomatoes, Arugula, & Parmesan Cheese

A fresh, light tomato and fresh arugula sauce that is perfect when seasonal tomatoes are in season.

Yield: Serves 4-6

Prep Time: 15 mins

Total Time: 15 mins

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 Garlic Cloves, Peeled And Minced
2 Pounds Ripe Tomatoes, Cut In Half
1/4 Cup Fresh Torn Basil Leaves
Salt & Pepper
1 Pound Pasta Of Choice
6 Cups Fresh Washed Arugula
2 Ounces Dried Parmesan Cheese, Shaved

Directions:

In a wide, nonstick frying pan, or in a 3-quart saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and add the garlic.
Cook, stirring, just until fragrant, about 1 minute, then add the tomatoes and salt and bring to a simmer.
Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring often, until the tomatoes have softened and thickened.
Just before the tomatoes have completed cooking, add the basil, and freshly ground pepper.
Keep warm while you could the pasta.
Cook the pasta until it is al dente, drain, and toss with the tomato sauce.
Divide into individual bowls and top each with a handful of fresh arugula and some shaved Pecorino cheese.
Serve immediately.