This simple roasted cherry tomato pasta is brimming with deep naturally sweet tomato flavor, roasted garlic, rosemary and thyme. The luscious sauce flows into the tiny pasta ridges for the ultimate burst of flavor in each bite. Enjoy hot or cold as a pasta salad brightened up with a fresh squeeze of lemon and fragrant basil.
In a large roasting dish combine the cherry tomatoes with the garlic, rosemary, thyme and olive oil. Sprinkle with a good pinch of coarse sea salt. Mix well.
2.5 lb cherry tomatoes, 10 cloves garlic, 2-3 Tbsp olive oil, 2 sprigs rosemary, 10 sprigs thyme, 1 pinch red pepper flakes, S & P to taste
Roast in the preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes until all the tomatoes have burst and released their juices. Discard the thyme and rosemary sprigs and fish out the garlic cloves (reserve them for later to slather on toast). Brighten up with a squeeze of fresh lemon and some zest.
Meanwhile bring a large pot of water to a boil. Season generously with salt and boil the pasta until al dente or to the tooth. Drain the pasta and do not rinse)
3/4 lb orecchiette rigate
Combine the pasta with the roasted tomatoes and all the juices. Hit it with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and some zest. Adjust seasonings with salt, pepper and chili flakes. Serve hot or cold with fresh basil and vegan parmesan if desired.
2.5 lb cherry tomatoes, 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, Vegan parmesan for serving, 3/4 lb orecchiette rigate
Mix in ideas - Vegan feta or parmesan (I love Violife), this fresh dairy free mozzarella or cashew ricotta, sautéed baby spinach, asparagus, artichoke hearts, roasted fennel or any of your favorite veggies.
Does roasting tomatoes change their flavor? - Yes, the roasting process makes tomatoes taste better because it concentrates their naturally sugars resulting in a richer more intense flavor profile without any acidity. This is especially true in combination with lots of garlic and woody herbs like rosemary and thyme.
Should I seed the tomatoes before roasting? - Absolutely not. All cherry tomatoes go straight into the pan whole.
Can I use grape tomatoes instead of cherry? - Not recommended, grape tomatoes have very tough skins and aren't juicy at all so they won't burst into the beautiful luscious sauce that cherry tomatoes do.
How do you flavor the pasta?- There's only one way to deeply flavor your pasta and it's happening during the boiling process. Your pasta water should taste like the sea, yes that means a generous amount of salt added to the boiling water.
Make it gluten free - Although the roasted tomato sauce is naturally gluten free it is up to you to choose a gluten free pasta when recreating this recipe.