20 minutes, plus several hours marinating
serves 3-4. depending on appetite
Pasta with Brie and tomatoes is the best - and easiest - dish of the summer. Chop bursting-ripe tomatoes, and marinate them all afternoon with fresh basil, garlic, olive oil, and Brie cheese. When it's time to eat, toss with just-cooked pasta.
  • 3 large tomatoes, very ripe
  • 2 medium cloves garlic
  • 1 large handful fresh basil leaves
  • ⅓ cup excellent olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • ½ pound Brie cheese
  • 1 pound pasta (choose your favorite shape)
  • freshly grated Parmesan (optional)

As you prepare the ingredients, place them all in a large serving bowl.

Cut the tomatoes into half-inch cubes. Peel and mince the garlic cloves. Shred the basil leaves finely. Cut the Brie into half-inch pieces. Season liberally with salt and pepper, and pour olive oil over all. Mix well, then cover with a clean tea towel and let stand at least 2 hours, and up to 6.

At serving time, bring water to a boil in a large pot. Add a tablespoon of salt, then add the pasta. Follow packages directions as to time, and cook until tender but still firm, or al dente.

Drain the pasta, and immediately toss with the tomato sauce. Serve at once. Garnish with grated Parmesan if you prefer, though I tend to leave it out.

This recipe lends itself to variations by changing the cheese and herbs. Fresh Mozzarella is wonderful and authentically Italian; feta and oregano would tilt this toward a Greek flavor. Experiment freely: with great tomatoes, nothing can go wrong!


adapted from the Silver Palate Cookbook 



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