Summer in a bowl. That's what we had for dinner last night. Not to brag or anything, but we've been watching our tomatoes turn redder every day and honestly by the end of the weekend we'll be enjoying the taste of the home grown variety (or at least one of them tee,hee). For all my negativity about living in the desert, it amazes me that one can eat garden grown tomatoes by Memorial Day weekend. I mean in Calgary one dare not plant the garden until after the May long weekend and often you'd still get caught with having to replant because of a late May snowstorm.
Anyway for those of you that are just starting your gardens - don't get your shorts in a twist because this pasta included roma's as well as cherry tomatoes, all of which were store bought. Those darn mini tomatoes seem to have the most flavor too and thankfully they're available year round.
One thing you gotta' love about pasta is that you can change it up any number of ways and it always tastes fabulous. This version combined crispy fried pancetta with red onion, garlic and pepper flakes but really showcased the fresh tomatoes and some basil from the garden. I also threw in a little fresh spinach just to trick the big guy into eating it cooked. Surprise - we absolutely devoured it. Download Ziti with Pancetta and Fresh Tomatoes
If you're not into pancetta you could just leave it out, or add some anchovies and capers and you'd have a darn fine puttanesca. The thing is, to quote Biba Caggiano from her book Modern Italian Cooking "sometimes we strive so much for originality in food that we forget that some of the best dishes are the simplest. A plate of pasta, dressed only with fragrant, fresh tomatoes will never go out of style. These are the basic and reassuring dishes that we go back to when we are saturated with innovations."
I don't know about you, but I plan on following Biba's "KISS" rule a little more often now that the heat's back on in Tucson.