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penne with fresh tomatoes
penne with fresh tomatoes
Paul McCredie


  • 300g fresh Italian tomatoes, cut into small cubes
    ½ tsp dried oregano, preferably Italian
    1 clove garlic, peeled
    1 handful fresh basil
    2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    500g quality Italian dried penne (we used Divella)
    160g buffalo mozzarella, cut into small cubes (should be left at room temperature)
    Parmigiano reggiano, finely grated, to serve

Pennette alla Sorrentina

Vanessa Marshall
  • Serving size: Serves 6
  • Cooking time: Less than 30 minutes

As early in the day as possible, prepare the following and leave covered until dinner. Place tomatoes in a large bowl and sprinkle with a little salt, freshly ground black pepper and the oregano. Flatten the garlic and add to the bowl with half the basil, torn roughly by hand. Drizzle with enough olive oil to moisten. Gently mix to combine. Do not chill; allow to sit at room temperature.

Cook the pasta in a large saucepan with plenty of salted boiling water until al dente. Strain thoroughly, giving the pasta a shake or two to release excess water.

Place the pasta in the bowl with the tomatoes and toss to combine. Rip the rest of the basil over the pasta and toss the mozzarella through, very quickly.

Serve immediately sprinkled with grated parmigiano reggiano.

Cook's tip:
The success of this dish, as with most Italian cooking, relies on the quality of the ingredients and the quick serving of the pasta. The heat of the cooked pasta will melt the delicate mozzarella at an alarming rate. Although the inherent stringing of the cheese is desirable, it is not the focus of the dish, and clumping can result if the dish is left to sit unnecessarily.

From Taste magazine, May 2007.

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