We just returned from a fabulous trip to Italy. During our stay in Sarteano, Auntie Jo made us the most amazingly simple pasta dish with roasted tomatoes. Looking around the kitchen last night for something wonderful to prepare for dinner, I noticed that my basket of tiny pear-shaped tomatoes from Berkeley Bowl was at the point of needing desperately to be eaten.
I remembered the delicious Italian roasted tomatoes with pasta that Auntie Jo had just made for us in Italy. I rinsed and sliced all the tomatoes, peeled the garlic and commenced chopping. As I sprinkled my freshly chopped garlic onto the tomatoes, it suddenly occurred to me that Auntie Jo had left all the cloves whole! Oh well…
I spied a bag of really small red onions in my pantry and decided they would be a lovely addition; I sliced one and tossed it in. Drizzled the whole thing with olive oil–Santa Giulia, Raccolto 2013, Olio Extravergine di Oliva, Terre Di Siena, which I lovingly carried home in my suitcase–popped the dish into my handy toaster oven (set to 400 degrees) for about 20 minutes and voilà.
Boiled half a box of organic De Cecco Penne Rigate No. 41 from Star Grocery on Claremont Avenue in Berkeley, tossed it with the roasted tomato mixture, a light sprinkling of freshly ground sea salt and Bob’s-your-Uncle, as they say in Wales!
Who would think an ice cold, 2011 German Riesling from Stone Fruit would so nicely complement my Roasted Tomatoes with Penne? It was actually really nice. A few fresh strawberries for dessert, and I had quickly created an amazing meal to savor at home in Orinda with all the aromatic memories of a week in Italy.