Fresh Tomato Pasta

From Pam Fortier

2015 Jul/Aug

I make endless variations of this in the summer. It’s like bruschetta pasta, so it’s for you if you crave that garlicky tomato combination. The riper your tomatoes, the better this will be. Grill some Italian sausages to make an easy summer meal.

This comes together fairly quickly, but benefits from an hour of maceration. It’s great with any type of dried pasta, but I especially love it on ricotta gnocchi – the recipe follows. If you like the idea of gnocchi but don’t want to make it, you can find good gnocchi at Italian markets.


  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. Sriracha hot sauce
  • 1 – 2 T. sherry or balsamic vinegar
  • 4 T. olive oil
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1-1/2 lb. ripe tomatoes, cut into 1/4- to 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 T. capers, chopped, if large
  • 1/2 lb. dried penne or other short-type pasta
  • 1/2 c. parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 1/2 – 1 c. fresh basil, cut into chiffonade or torn


Mince the garlic, then add salt and grind to a paste with the side of your knife on a cutting board. Place in a bowl with the hot sauce, vinegar, olive oil and pepper. Add the tomatoes and capers.
Mix to combine and allow to sit at room temperature for at least an hour, stirring occasionally.

Cook the pasta in generously salted water to desired doneness. Taste the tomato mixture and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Drain the pasta well and add to the tomatoes. Add the parmesan cheese and basil and mix to combine. This can be eaten hot or at room temperature. Serves 3 to 4 as a side.