So let’s get started. Here’s a recipe that looks good enough to serve to a date and is fast enough to prepare that you can throw it together for a quick dinner when you get home from class.
Italian Flag Pasta
- Any type of pasta (angel hair looks nice if it’s for a date)
- A container of cherry tomatoes, cut into halves
- 5 cloves of garlic, minced as fine as you can
- A palm-full of pearl bocconcini (if all you have is bigger bocconcini, just cut it into smaller pieces)
- A big handful of fresh basil leaves
- Olive oil
Cook the pasta until it’s al dente, or just under completely cooked. Before you drain the pasta, save a bit of the cooking water by dipping a coffee cup into the pot
While the pasta is cooking, heat some olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat and throw in the tomatoes. Try to make sure they’re all cut side down. Now leave them alone! Don’t toss them, don’t move them, just let them cook for a few minutes. Once the tomatoes start to brown slightly, add the garlic and toss the whole thing with a spatula or a pair of tongs. Once the garlic has had a few minutes to cook and soften, turn down the heat to medium-low and use a fork to mash the tomatoes. Try to get as much juice out as you can because this is going to act as the sauce.
Now add the pasta and toss it around to coat each piece with the garlic-tomato mixture. Once the pasta is coated, throw in a palm-full of bocconcini and then tear up a big handful of fresh basil and add that to the mix. Use your tongs to toss the whole thing together, then serve it up immediately.
If you’re serving it for a guest, it’ll look best piled in the centre of a big white plate. If you’re serving it for yourself, bowl, plate, straight out of the pan… who cares?