Fresh Linguini with Roasted Tomatoes and Arugula
|February 26, 2013||Posted by jcogswell1 under Dinner|
I am finally back with a new recipe! After not eating for a few days and then not cooking for a few days thereafter (because all I craved was noodles in broth!), I was more than excited to get back into the kitchen on Monday night!
I was so excited, in fact, that I spent a solid 2 hours on Sunday doing meal planning and recipe creation! To get back into the cooking groove, I wanted to make the first meal of the week an easy prep dish, but not have it compromise on flavor. Enter – fresh linguini pasta topped with roasted tomatoes, fresh arugula and a creamy egg yolk.
The fresh pasta is one of the key elements of this dish because it absorbs flavor so much more than dry pasta does. And because this particular dish doesn’t have a “sauce” per se, absorption of flavors is very important. I chose a fresh linguini I found at Whole Foods made by RP’s Pasta Company in Madison, WI (woohoo for local-ish ingredients). They also make gluten free options as well.
Another key element of the dish is roasting the cherry tomatoes prior to incorporating them into the pasta. Roasting the tomatoes gets them very caramelized, slightly browned and totally enhances the tomato flavor more than sautéing them does.
Do you see the charred pieces around the tomatoes? That caramelization makes them taste like little cherry tomato candies. While the peppery arugula in this dish works really well as a contrast to the sweetness of the tomatoes, I wouldn’t say that it is totally necessary. It think you could easily swap it out for baby spinach or leave it out entirely. I just like to add lots of greens to my pasta to trick myself into thinking that what I am eating is really healthy.
One thing I wouldn’t omit in this dish? The raw egg yolk that goes on top.
While you might feel squeamish adding a raw egg to your pasta, don’t! The heat from the pasta lightly cooks the eggs and it acts as a beautifully coated sauce on the noodles. Because of the use of an egg yolk, this dish acts a little like a healthier version of carbonara – which is traditionally made with egg yolk, bacon or pancetta, and lots of cheese! All I know, was that this was the perfect welcome back into the kitchen and back into the world of delicious eating! Enjoy!
Fresh Linguini with Roasted Tomatoes and Arugula – Serves 3-4
2x 9 ounce packages of fresh pasta (about 1 lb of fresh pasta)
2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup of EVOO
S+P to taste
8 cups fresh baby arugula
3-4 egg yolks, room temperature (depending on how many people you are feeding, but plan on one egg yolk per portion)
Grated Parmesan Cheese for topping
Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees and bring a large pot of water to a boil.
Meanwhile, place the halved tomatoes into a large bowl and mix with olive oil, salt and pepper (I used about 1 tsp of salt + pepper). Lay onto a baking sheet (with sides is helpful in case anything runs over) cut side up.
Place in oven for 30 minutes or until the tomatoes are slightly browned and have reduced in size. Add the tomatoes, olive oil and seasoning to another large bowl and mix with the arugula.
At this point, drop your pasta into the boiling salted water and cook per package instructions (should be about 2 minutes). Drain the pasta (reserving a bit of pasta water) and place over the tomato and arugula mixture. Combine all ingredients, taste the pasta, and adjust seasoning as necessary (I added a bit more salt).
Divide the pasta equally among individual bowls and top each one with an egg yolk and generous topping of grated parmesan.
Have each person break their egg yolk and stir everything to combine. Eat immediately while still warm with a bit more parmesan cheese and a sprinkling of hot pepper flakes (if you prefer!).