Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Linguine with Baby Heirloom Tomatoes and Breadcrumbs

With temperatures up in the 90s this week, I haven't been wanting to cook anything too heavy/rich this week. Last night, I got to try my first recipe out of my new (June) issue of Bon Appetit. It was perfect for the season, full of juicy tomatoes and fresh basil. I even got to make my own homemade breadcrumbs (definitely worth the minimal effort).

The weather also has me wanting my own garden. Of course, this is totally out of the question with our impending move across the world. My pacifier? A $5-Jiffy Greenhouse from Home Depot. It begins as pellets of soil in a tray. You soak the pellets, they puff up, you plant your seeds, and then cover the tray with the "dome" (plastic cover). Fingers crossed, it won't be too long until we've got our own cilantro, oregano, parsley, basil and lavender! Maybe it was all the sunshine at the pool today, but I got the itch to make little markers for them, too (homegrown, of course!):



  • 8 oz. linguine
  • 3 tbsp EVOO, divided
  • 3 garlic cloves, pressed and divided
  • 1 C coarse fresh breadcrumbs mad from crustless country bread (directions at end)
  • (1) 1 lb. container baby heirloom tomatoes or cherry tomatoes (I'd probably add another 1/2 if you've got fresh ones!)
  • 1 C thinly sliced fresh basil
  • 1/2 C freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • (*The original recipe calls for 6 anchovy fillets, mashed to paste with 1 tsp oil from can. I'm not a seafood girl [I draw the line at shrimp], and I'm especially not a seafood-in-a-can kinda girl. Add this at your own risk.)
  1. Cook linguine until just tender but firm to bite. Drain, reserving 1 C cooking liquid.
  2. Heat 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat.
  3. Add anchovies (optional) and 2 garlic cloves, then breadcrumbs. Cook breadcrumbs until golden, tossing to distribute evenly, about 5 minutes.
  4. Scrape crumbs onto plate and cool.
  5. Heat remaining 1 1/2 tbsp oil in the same skillet over medium heat.
  6. Add tomatoes and remaining garlic clove. Cover; cook until tomatoes begin to break down, 3 to 4 minutes. 
  7. Using fork, crush 1/4 of tomatoes. 
  8. Add pasta, basil, cheese, and 1/2 C reserved cooking liquid to tomatoes. Toss, adding more liquid if dry.
  9. Mix in half of crumbs and season with salt and pepper.
  10. Transfer pasta to large shallow bowl; top with remaining breadcrumbs and serve.

Et voila!

"Test-Kitchen Tip: To make coarse fresh breadcrumbs, trim the crust off slices of (fresh or stale) country bread. Tear the bread into chunks, then grind it in the processor until coarse crumbs are formed."

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  1. Mmm. What a simple summer pasta dish. It looks like something I would order at a restaurant. I am sure it would taste even better with your home grown herbs. I will keep my fingers crossed for you.

  2. This looks good!! Love the recipe - I think I'll try it within the next week :D

    * Found you on NFF *