We’re Cooking: Gary’s Pasta

I love to cook, I love to make dinner for my Gary, I love to show my love for him through a meal to share every night. When we are home, dinner preparation falls on my plate most days. However, when we travel, Gary takes the reigns more often than not. We often stay in wonderful homes with great kitchens, often inspiring Gary to create my favorite of his many famous dishes (white bean chili and orange-ginger salmon excluded,) what I call “Gary’s Pasta.”

It is an easy dish, highlighted by a fresh mix of tomatoes, onions, garlic, capers, basil, parsley, white wine and olive oil on your favorite pasta shape, which for Gary is either angel hair or pappardelle. Pair with your favorite Tuscan red, like a Chianti Classico from Coltibuono, and call it a day.

Recipe: Gary’s Pasta
1 small onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced fine
6 Roma tomatoes, you can either blanch for 30 seconds in boiling water, then plunge into an ice bath and peel the skins off, then cut in half and remove the seeds, then chop…or simply chop. We don’t mind the skins or seeds.
1teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to your taste
2 tablespoons rinsed capers
1/4 cup olive oil + more for drizzling
1/2 cup white wine
2 tablespoons each freshly chopped parsley and basil
shaved parmesan for garnish
10 ounces pasta of your choice
salt and pepper
And…feel free to add anything else you may have in the fridge, chopped mushrooms, fennel, squash, etc.

Bring a stock pot of water to a boil to cook your pasta. As the water is coming to temp begin your sauce. Add 1/4 cup olive oil to a saute pan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring often for about 4 minutes, then add the tomatoes, capers and red pepper flakes with about 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cook for 2 more minutes then add the wine. Cook together for about 4 minutes. The water should be boiling by now. Add a tablespoon of salt to the water and a drizzle of olive oil. Bring back to a boil, then add the pasta. Cook until just al dente, about 8 minutes or according to your package instructions. As the pasta cooks, stir the herbs into the sauce and reduce heat to low. When the pasta is cooked drain, retaining about 1/2 cup of cooking liquid. Add the pasta to the sauce and stir together. Add a few tablespoons of the cooking liquid to the pasta to loosen it slightly. Taste and adjust the seasonsings, if needed. Sitr and then spoon onto plates and serve with shaved parm on top.