Basil Spaghetti with Cheesy Broiled Tomatoes

>> Thursday, July 21, 2011

Well, the name pretty much sums it all up, so I'll just go now...

Just kidding! I really had you going there, right?!?

I'm such a dork.

Back to the food. This dish was a wonderful, hearty - but not too hearty - vegetarian dish. My meat-eating man cleaned his plate and asked for more. This meal was just the perfect summer meal - a lightly seasoned pasta, fresh tomatoes, fresh basil, and melted, gooey cheese. Yes, please! If it weren't brutally hot in Texas, I would have loved to eat this out on the back deck with a glass of crisp white wine while reminiscing about our Italian honeymoon. But it's over 100 degrees (which totally qualifies as brutally hot in my book), so we ate inside with the air conditioner on full blast while intermittently telling Finley not to feed her tomatoes to the dog. Just keeping it real!

Basil Spaghetti with Cheesy Broiled Tomatoes
recipe from Real Simple - serves 4

12 oz spaghetti
3 large beefsteak tomatoes (about 1 1/2 lbs), each cut into 4 thick slices
3 T olive oil
salt and pepper
8 oz fresh mozzarella, grated
1/4 cup parmesan, grated or shaved
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
3/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves, plus more for serving

Heat broiler. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and return to pot.

Meanwhile, arrange tomato slices on greased baking sheet. Season with each slice salt and black pepper. Dividing evenly, sprinkle tomato slices with mozzarella and parmesan. Broil until the cheese is bubbly and golden, 3 to 7 minutes.

In a small saucepan, warm the oil with the garlic and red pepper over medium heat until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Toss sauce with the pasta. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve tomato slices over spaghetti. Garnish with extra basil leaves.


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