Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Summer Arugula & Tomato Pasta

I made this the other night because I wanted something that exhibited bright, Summer-like doses of full flavor.  Well, this hit the spot.  Fresh heirloom tomatoes, that are sweet & give this dish a hearty feeling.  The beautiful arugula that becomes milder in flavor, when cooked & wraps the pasta in gorgeous green colors, while maintaining it's classic spicy peppery flavor.  Then you bring in the lemony garlic olive oil, which coats the pasta & brings it to life.  And the heat from the cayenne, really rounds it off.  There's no better way to celebrate the great foods that can be found in any garden.  

8 oz Ziti pasta
1 tablespoon kosher salt (to season pasta water)
2 medium heirloom tomatoes (1 yellow & 1 red), diced 
2 cups Arugula
1/4 - 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons pasta water
1/2 organic lemon juiced & zested
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
3 tablespoons fresh basil, garnish
season to taste with salt, pepper & cayenne

In a 5 qt dutch oven or pasta pot, filled up halfway with water, bring to a boil & add 1 tablespoon salt.  Add pasta & I always add a little olive oil to the water, too.  Cook according to package directions.  Meanwhile prepare your sauce.  In a bowl, add 3 tablespoons pasta water (remove while pasta is cooking), stir in olive oil, lemon juice & zest, garlic, season to taste with salt, pepper & cayenne.  Set aside.  Drain pasta  & return it to the pot, on the stove (burner should be off).  Toss in arugula & the heat from the pasta will cook it down.  Add lemony-garlic sauce, tomatoes & finally your parmesan cheese.  Garnish with fresh basil, walnuts & a sprinkle of parmesan, season to taste.  Serve & enjoy!!!   

Makes about 3-4 servings 
(could be more like 4 if you serve it with a salad) 

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