Summer is the best time for juicy red tomatoes, and this week’s three-ingredient pasta takes full advantage. Today, Brandon from Kitchen Konfidence shares his recipe for pasta with slow-cooked tomatoes, basil and garlic. Here’s how to make it…
Tomato Confit Pasta
by Brandon Matzek of Kitchen Konfidence
Ripe, fragrant tomatoes are a favorite of mine during the summer months, so I try to cook with them as much as possible before the season ends. I love using fresh tomatoes in salads, appetizers and cocktails, but most of all, in tomato sauce.
This recipe pairs slow-cooked tomato confit with al dente pasta and fresh basil. The term confit is typically associated with meat (especially duck), but can also be applied to fruits and vegetables. Confit simply means to cook something in fat at a low temperature for a longer period of time.
Here, cherry tomatoes are tossed with olive oil, garlic and basil, then slow-cooked until tender and wrinkled. The resulting tomato confit has a wonderfully concentrated tomato flavor. With just a handful of ingredients and minimal effort (everything cooks in the oven), you can have a delicious, seasonal pasta sauce that’s ready in under an hour.
Sometimes I like to double the recipe below and store leftovers in the fridge for later use. Tomato confit can also be used as a condiment for steak, chicken, sandwiches, salads or crostini. Just be sure to bring the mixture to room temperature before using.
12 oz dried pasta
2 pints (50–60) cherry tomatoes, stemmed
4 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
Handful of basil leaves, torn, plus more for topping
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 325F. Place tomatoes, garlic and basil on a rimmed baking sheet, and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil. Sprinkle with a large pinch of salt and several turns of black pepper, then toss to combine. Bake until the tomatoes are soft and wrinkled, 45—50 minutes, stirring the tomatoes around a few times to ensure even cooking.
While the tomatoes are cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente (soft on the outside, but still some bite left on the inside). Place cooked pasta and tomato confit in a large bowl, tossing to combine. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper (I add a couple additional pinches of salt).
To serve, finish with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkling of chopped fresh basil.
* If you don’t plan to use all the confit right away, skip the garlic and store the confit in the fridge for up to four weeks.
Thank you so much, Brandon!
(Photos and recipe courtesy of Brandon Matzek. Thanks to Caroline Donofrio for helping with this series)