Monday, September 26, 2011

Pasta with Tomatoes, Basil and Fontina

I love meal planning and budgeting and making grocery lists and devising new recipes based on the ingredients we have on hand. An afternoon spent planning and making lists is Andrew’s worst nightmare whereas I feel so satisfied doing these tasks. So, in our house, I gladly do all of the meal planning.

Andrew makes very few requests when it comes to meal planning. He happily eats whatever I’m in the mood to make including lots of things that he would definitely never order at a restaurant like tofu sloppy joes (unless we’re at the ranch), pinto bean patties and grilled eggplant sandwiches. He’s pretty much the best person to cook for because he always compliments me on the smell of the food as it is cooking and the presentation on the plate, and he always exclaims what a good dinner we are having after his first bite. He even emails me at work in the mornings to thank me for the previous night’s dinner. It’s quite rewarding to cook for such an appreciative and enthusiastic diner.

Last week he asked me what I was going to be doing with all of the tomatoes from the garden. I thought about it for a minute and exclaimed that I can’t believe I haven’t made one of my favorite summer recipes yet. I was referring to a tomato and bread salad, and I could tell he was a little disappointed. I had to worm it out of him, but as it turns out, he was really hoping that I would make his favorite pasta dish that can only be made with the very best ripe garden tomatoes. It is a pasta dish from his childhood, a family tradition and everything. I can’t believe he didn’t say anything sooner, but it wasn’t too late because our tomatoes are just perfect right now. So, here is Andrew’s favorite summer pasta that he has eaten every summer growing up with his family – thank goodness we didn’t miss it this year!

Andrew’s Pasta with Tomato, Basil and Fontina


4-5 Ripe garden tomatoes – I used 3 large Cherokee Purples and about a half pint of Sweet 100 Cherry Tomatoes
4 cloves garlic, minced
Bunch of fresh basil, cut into thin strips
6 ounces Fontina cheese, shredded
12 ounces whole wheat pasta

Dice tomatoes and place in a medium sized glass bowl with all of their juices. Add minced garlic and basil. Cover and let sit overnight on the counter (not in the fridge), stirring once or twice.

Cook pasta according to box directions in salted water. When pasta is cooked al dente, drain and add the tomato and basil mixture to the pot, reduce heat to medium low. Heat the tomatoes through, add the pasta back to the pot, and add the shredded Fontina. Gently stir the pasta until the Fontina has melted and is distributed evenly (this can be a little tricky because it can clump up, but keep stirring gently). Serve with freshly shredded parmesan and a few strips of fresh basil leaves on top and enjoy! I seasoned mine with red pepper flakes for a little bit of a bite.


  1. This one made me's the same way here with Edd hating any type of planning. I have gotten him into list-making recently, though.

  2. well, that's pretty good. Andrew hates lists, and i love them.


Hey, thank you!

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