Usually I do not enjoy cooking for myself when my dear wife is out of town, but tonight’s experience my change that. After feeding the canine crowd at 5 o’clock I walked down the street to a reception of new work by the visiting artist at A.I.R. Studio, and returned about an hour later. Standing in the kitchen, I was sorely tempted to reach for the peanut butter and jelly, when I saw the two Roma tomatoes on the counter. They were almost a week old, and were beginning to show their age. I knew if I didn’t use them tonight they would end up in the trash, and wasting a fresh tomato is something I would never do. And I knew in an instant what I was going to do
2. Roma tomatoes, peeled and chopped, seeds included
3. Olive oil
4. Shallots, thinly sliced
5. Garlic, one clove pressed
7. Sweet Vermouth
While the pasta water is heating, cook the shallots in olive oil until they become soft, then add the garlic and basil, followed by the tomatoes. Simmer uncovered over low heat for about 5 minutes before adding about ¼ cup of the sweet vermouth. Cook the sauce for about 15-20 minutes. Add the butter – I used about one generous tablespoon – several minutes before the pasta is ready. I added the pasta directly to the pan with the sauce, but it could be mixed in a separate bowl. Mix in the mozzarella and serve, garnished with some fresh basil and oregano.
This is the way I love to cook, making something happen with whatever is hanging around the kitchen. It was delicious, and I’m sure I will do it again.