Kiddo made supper over the weekend. Whenever I print out recipes for him to follow, I don’t include photos. Most of the time, he doesn’t need pictures. Kiddo knows his way around the kitchen well enough not to require visual aids. This time around, it was a mistake. Not that the finished dish in any way suffered, but he would have been spared the need to be creative.
I could hear him chopping and prepping. I asked if he needed any help, which he declined. There was the distinct “click” of the burner turned on. Supper was cooking. And then there came a request that made me get up and wander into the kitchen. Do we own a turkey baster? Kiddo had placed all the ingredients into our standard pasta pot. He then placed the pasta on top, in a standing position. It really needed to be on its side, surrounded by the other ingredients in the pot so that everything could easily be submerged in the boiling water. With the pasta standing up, only the lower half was in the water, beginning to cook and soften. When he tried to pull the pasta through as instructed, all that was happening was that the dry pasta was breaking into pieces. I’ve got to give him credit, the turkey baster did the trick and within a few minutes, the pasta softened evenly and all the ingredients were cooking together very nicely. Ten minutes later, and a wonderful pasta dish was ready.
One-Pot Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil
12 oz linguine
1 large onion, very thinly sliced, about 2 cups
4 – 6 garlic cloves, very thinly sliced
12 oz or 3 cups grape tomatoes, halved
10 basil leaves, torn in half, additional for garnish
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper, plus more to taste
4 1/2 cups water
Topping: Freshly grated Romano or Parmesan cheese, several basil leaves thinly sliced
Combine all ingredients in a straight sided large skillet or pot. Make sure your pasta can lay flat in the cooking liquid.
Bring to a high boil and then reduce heat just enough to keep it boiling without splattering you as you stir and toss it constantly with tongs for about 8-10 minutes. The water and tomatoes will reduce down and the pasta will release starches that thicken it and make it creamy.
Do not wait for all of the liquid to evaporate. Taste the pasta as it finishes cooking. When it has softened to your liking remove from the heat. Taste and adjust salt and pepper if needed. Scoop into serving bowls and top with fresh cheese and additional basil. Enjoy!