In some country houses, you might find capers and oregano in the bowl, or hot pepper and crushed garlic, or mint or even celery leaves. Everything in this dish is about what the country cook has on hand.
Cook to Cook: Exceptionally good tomatoes and olive oil you want to eat with a spoon are the only requirements for this recipe. Try a variety of tomatoes if possible-the punchy little Sweet 100s or Sun Golds, mellow beefsteaks and maybe one or two sweet yellow or orange ones. Tear the basil with your hands, rather than chopping with a knife. You enjoy more of its fragrance this way.
I discovered a trick for making pasta with raw tomato sauces taste lustier. Slightly undercook the pasta. Drain it. Spoon the juices that raw sauces always throw off into the empty pasta pot. Set it over medium-low heat, add the pasta and toss until the juices are absorbed, then add the pasta to the sauce. Pasta and raw tomato sauce is served at room temperature, never chilled.
Wine Suggestion: A simple Tuscan red like Monte Antico or Santa Cristina's Chianti
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Copyright © 2012, Lynne Rossetto Kasper