I have (I think) some good qualities, but as my friends and family will tell you, flexibility is not one of them. I am very attached to all my lists and schedules. Once I have something on my calendar I am very cranky about changing it. Which leads me to the story behind this recipe. It’s a scrumptious and simple one, and the key ingredient, the one that makes it sing, are the grilled tomatoes. The smoky taste that you can only get when you char them a little bit on the grill — that’s what sets this terrific, easy little recipe apart. It’s a little bit chancy to plan for this recipe in February in the Northeast, but last weekend it was edging up towards 50 degrees and it felt like maybe spring was around the corner. So I bought me some plum tomatoes and put it on the menu for today.
Then I woke up this morning, looked outside my window and saw this where my back yard used to be.
My trees all looked like they belonged in a Dr. Suess book.
The dog was delirious with happiness. But all I could think of was my grilled tomato linguine dinner.
Because my grill looked like this.
I saw my lovely dinner vanishing right before my eyes. Normal people would have simply figured out something else for dinner. But I have the inflexibility thing going on. What happened next is why I am hopelessly and forever head over heels for the Southern husband.
Those are actual wet, cold snowflakes raining down on him as he grills up those tomatoes for me.
I am one lucky, inflexible girl.
OK, so back to the recipe — as I mentioned earlier, the key to this whole recipe is the wonderful taste of the grilled tomatoes. You take plum tomatoes, cut them in half, scoop out the seeds and drop them in a bowl with some oil oil, some salt and fresh ground pepper and some thyme — fresh if you have it, dried if you don’t. Fire up that grill and cook them until they are soft and a little bit charred, and then drop them back into that same bowl.
Meantime, cook up some linguine in salted water until it is al dente. Drain it, add some nice olive oil, some fresh grated Parmesan (use the good stuff!) and some fresh ground pepper. Now take those glorious grilled tomatoes, chop them up into pieces and add them with whatever juice and oil has accumulated in the bottom of the bowl and add all of that to the pasta. Toss and divide among warmed dishes…pasta heaven. Any time of year!
LINGUINE WITH GRILLED TOMATOES, adapted from Everyday Foods