Summer Pasta Week: Fresh Tomato Spaghetti

Summer Pasta Week: Fresh Tomato Spaghetti

We just got back from a week away in Prince Edward County. For those of you who don’t know it, it’s about 2 and a half hours east of Toronto, ultra lush farm land near the fantastic Sandbanks provincial park. You can’t drive for more than 5 minutes without coming across a farm stand and we took full advantage of it. One stand about a mile from the farm house we rented had patty pans (recipe coming soon!) and about five different varieties of garlic. We did some other things like swim, poke around Bloomfield, Picton and Waupoos but what we really did was eat and drink. Salads, barbecues, fruit crumbles, local wines and ciders…. Let’s just say I think I undid all the good the 5 km runs I’ve been doing three times a week this summer.

But my poor children are in S.C.W. – Serious Cousin Withdrawl. A week with the two most patient teenagers I know (aka, my nephews, Dylan and Gareth) have left them extremely dissatisfied with our and their own company. On our way to our neighbourhood splash pad this morning Julian spotted a dark haired teen and yelled, “Guff!” His little face crumpled when I told him it wasn’t Gareth. Short of planning another family trip I’m not sure what I can do about their current state. My own rehabilitation is going to involve lentils. Anyone with good, detox-y recipes, please do send them. While I wait I’m going to make some fresh summer pastas and hope that it gets us off the road of excess while still making the most of great summer produce. I love this quick recipe. I used heirloom tomatoes but any good ones would do. You could add some grated parmesan cheese to this as well but we liked it really simple. 

food photos by Maya Visnyei

Fresh Tomato Spaghetti

2 cups fresh tomatoes, washed and chopped
1 head of arugula, washed and rough chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
500 gram package of wholewheat spaghetti
salt and pepper to taste

Method

Put a big pot of well salted water on to boil.

In a sautee pan, bring the olive oil to low medium heat. Add minced garlic and allow to cook but not brown. Keep stirring! You’re just taking the bite out of it so it’s only going to take a couple of minutes. Take off the heat.

Place your spaghetti noodles in the boiling water and cook as long as the package instructions dictate. Scoop out a cup of water out of the post before draining – this is a good habit to get into. The starchy water is a great way to loosen up a too-thick sauce, plus it adds a certain slickness to your pastas.

Drain your noodles well before tossing them back in the pot. Add the garlic-infused oil and vinegar and toss well until all of the spaghetti is well coated. Now add your tomatoes and toss again. Throw in the arugula and give it another good mix so there are pieces of green throughout. Taste before adding a bit of salt and pepper. As much as I try to keep salt to a minimum, I do looove the taste of salt with tomato so do what you’ve got to do!

I brought this to a dinner party with a big group of kids in attendance. It was a big fat hit. It does not replace the fun of wrestling with your big cousins all day long (actually that’s my brother David wrestling Gareth while Esme gives them both a whack with a noodle) but it’s still pretty good.

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7 Comments

  1. Jacquelyn Francis
    August 04, 17:03 Reply
    Yum! These pics are amazing. I am doing a similar trip in two weeks and I can't deal without a meal plan. Would love to see an "SPC does Prince Edward County sample menu" if you are ever so inclined.
  2. Ceri Marsh
    August 05, 07:12 Reply
    Jac! That's a great idea. Let's see... I made my own pancake mix in advance. That was good for three pancake breakfasts (just added local berries). We brought a small cooler so we could have first dinner ready to cook. Made sausages on buns on the crazy barbecue our farmhouse had. Who knew Kitchen Aid made bbqs? We had steaks from Goodfellows in Picton (a butcher) one night and had leftovers for steak sandwiches for our Sandbanks picnic the next day. I made a double batch of SPC's lemon pasta one night so there were leftover for kid lunches for two days. There's pretty good seafood vendor in Picton, too. So one night we had SPC's grilled shrimp salad. We could have been a bit more organized with food - ended up bringing a lot of odds and ends home. We didn't create a meal plan in advance but it's a good idea. You can get almost all produce from farm stands but for groceries go to Sobey's in Picton (tip from the locals!). Where are you staying? Have a great time!
  3. jacq
    August 05, 09:32 Reply
    Thanks for this! Huge help to have a few ideas in mind. Especially the rollover meals. That pancake mix idea is very good, my fussy eater will never have the berries ARGH! Will look for Goodfellows. Thank you SPC!
  4. Robin
    August 05, 23:38 Reply
    Looks amazing. I tend to forget about pasta during hot weather but will whip this up this weekend.
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