RECIPE: Spaghettini with Checca Sauce

annova914January 31, 2008

I can't remember if I've posted this recipe already but we had it tonight and we love it. It's a Giada recipe but I've made changes, one of them being: after I cut the cherry tomatoes in half I sprinkle them with a little sugar to make sure they'll be sweet. I also sprinkle a bit of dried red pepper flakes and sometimes add a small amount of capers at the end. The original recipe may use more parmesan. I also put the tomatoes and mozzarella cubes in after I've pulsed the other ingredients a few times. I prefer regular mozzarella (like Sorrento whole milk or part skim milk)& have always used spaghettini.

Spaghettini with Checca Sauce

8 ounces spaghettini or angel hair pasta

4 scallions (white & pale green parts only), coarsely chopped

3 garlic cloves, crushed

1 (12-ounce container) cherry tomatoes, halved (I like Desert Glory)

1 (1-ounce) piece Parmesan, coarsely chopped

8 to 10 fresh basil leaves

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

4 oz fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into ½" cubes

Sugar (my addition)

sprinkle a few dried red pepper flakes (my addition)

¼ cup reserved cooking water set aside

Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, tender but still firm to the bite, stirring often, about 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the next 7 ingredients in a food processor. Pulse just until the tomatoes are coarsely chopped (do not puree).

Drain the pasta, reserving some of the pasta water. Toss the pasta with the tomato mixture and fresh mozzarella in a large bowl. Add some of the reserved pasta water (about 1/4 cup) if the sauce looks dry. Serve immediately. Giada Di Laurentis

Some of the reviews at her Food Network website:

Good with Italian turkey sausage

could be a bruschetta; good with penne; use roasted garlic

add spicy grilled shrimp;

add sugar and 4 sweet cherry peppers and double the recipe

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I love those kinds of sauces especially in winter when the tomatoes aren't the best. Thanks for posting this.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2008 at 7:30AM
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Thanks, this sounds great. We are really in a rut here in this house with pasta and I need something new and different.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2008 at 10:40AM
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