Bucatini with Burst Tomatoes and Chiles
With all the delicious tomatoes in the garden, we've been testing out a lot of tomato-fueled recipes. Traditional marinaras, no-cook tomato sauces, and pretty much anything else that calls for large quantities of tomatoes. I have one particular plant - a yellow plum tomato plant - that is exploding with tomatoes. They're a bit smaller, and when I ran across this recipe in the latest Bon Appetit, I knew they would be perfect for this one. The great thing is that you end up with a nice, creamy sauce - but there's no cream. Yippee! Mixing the olive oil, cheese, and hot pasta water gives this nice little creamy texture to the sauce.The original recipe calls for linguine, but I'm not a big fan of linguine. I love me some bucatini. Something about that thick pasta (and it's hollow - did you know?) just makes the dish seem a lot heartier. If you're a linguine fan - or even if you like it skinny and angel hairy - feel free to swap out the pasta. The original dish also calls for chiles, but I didn't have any chiles, so I used chili flakes, and they gave a nice little kick to the dish. We also added some fresh basil to top of the dish, mainly because our garden is overflowing with basil, and it added a nice little flavor to the dish. Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit.
- 2 1/4"-thick slices crusty bread, well-toasted, broken into pieces (or panko bread crumbs if you're feeling lazy)
- 12 oz. bucatini
- Kosher salt
- 1 Tbsp. chopped drained oil-packed Calabrian chiles (or chili flakes)
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil, plus more
- 1 lb. small tomatoes
- 1 1/2 oz. Pecorino, finely grated (about 3/4 cup)
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Fresh basil, roughly chopped
- If you're not using bread crumbs, pulse the toast in a food processor to fine crumbs; set aside.
- Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente; drain, reserving 1 1/2 cups pasta cooking liquid (don't forget this step!).
- Meanwhile, heat chiles (or chili flakes) and 3 Tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until sizzling, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, increase to medium-high, and cook, turning tomatoes occasionally, until blistered in spots, about 3 minutes. Continue to cook, lightly crushing tomatoes, until beginning to break down, about 3 minutes.
- Add pasta, 1 cup pasta cooking liquid, and 1/2 cup Pecorino to skillet and cook, tossing and adding more liquid as needed, until sauce coats pasta, about 2 minutes.
- Serve pasta seasoned with salt and pepper and topped with remaining Pecorino, reserved breadcrumbs, and basil.