The other day, I channeled Ina Garten to make this yummy, yummy lunch. I love that woman. Her food is beautiful, and real, and simple, and good. And her speaking voice is very soothing. I always like voices that sound like they would be good at reading bedtime stories. Hers is one of them. I loved watching her show (back when we had cable TV...)
Anyway, I made this for Mark and myself for lunch this past week (we ate on it for about 3 days), and it was utterly delightful. Here's how:
Start with all of these lovely ingredients:
Put the pasta on to boil per the package instructions, and begin chopping some tomatoes
(Isn't that the prettiest thing you might have ever seen?)
When the tomatoes are chopped, cut up some fresh mozzarella in bite-size pieces.
(Be still, my heart.)
Then, when the pasta's done, drain all the liquid out of it. Run some cold water over it to help it cool off.
And put it in a big bowl
Then add the tomatoes and the cheese that you just cut up.
Then, get a jar of sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, take out about 6 of 'em, and pat the oil off (mostly.)
Then chop them up, and put them in the bowl too, and stir it all up together.
Then you'll need a food processor for the dressing. It really helps if you have a food processor instead of a blender, like I have, because then everything won't get wedged in the very bottom and you spend about 5 minutes trying to scrape it out with a spatula. Just sayin'.
I sadly don't have any pictures of the dressing process, because I was in a super-crazy hurry and it was about 7:30 in the morning, and I was trying to make muffins at the same time, and the pictures just never got taken. You can just refer to the recipe I'll be posting below in a minute for that part.
After you do the dressing, pour it over the pasta, and stir THAT up really well.
Then, it can sit in the fridge for a while ... ours lasted a good 3 days (at which point it was all eaten up, so I don't know how much longer it would've lasted after that.)
When you're ready to eat it, I just snipped off a basil leaf or two from my basil plant, tore it up, stirred it in, and grated parmesan cheese over the top. But you can do it however you want.
And now, the actual recipe from Mrs. Ina Garten herself. (Have I said that I love that woman?)
Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes
1/2 lb. fusilli (spirals) pasta
1 lb. ripe tomatoes, medium-diced
3/4 c. good black olives (such as kalamata) pitted and diced (I omitted these, cause I'm not an olive fan)
1 lb. fresh mozzarella, medium-diced
6 sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, chopped and drained
For the Dressing:
5 sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
6 Tbsp. good olive oil
1 garlic clove, diced
1 tsp. capers, drained
2 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 c. packed basil leaves, julienned
Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water with a splash of oil to keep it from sticking together. Boil for 12 minutes, or according to the directions on the package. Drain well and allow to cool. Place the pasta in a bowl and add the tomatoes, olives, mozzarella, and chopped sun-dried tomatoes.
For the dressing, combine the sun-dried tomatoes, vinegar, olive oil, garlic, capers, salt, and pepper in a food processor until almost smooth.
Pour the dressing over the pasta, sprinkle with the Parmesan and basil, and toss well.
And there you go. It's super easy (especially if you have a food processor instead of a blender!) and super tasty. My husband raved about it - he asked if we could eat it all the time. Always a good sign :) Enjoy!!