Pasta with Sweet Yellow Tomatoes

Every summer I look forward to the Return of the Tomato.  I do love the classic red ones, and have about one million recipes that call for them, but I’m also crazy about the green ones (fried green tomatoes!) and the sweetest ones of all, which are the yellow ones.  It has something to do with less tannic acid (or maybe more…I’m a little fuzzy on the technicalities) but they have a sweet, perfect taste that makes you want to bite into them like they were a peach or an apple.  As a matter of fact, you might want to buy a couple of extras just to do that.

And after you’ve gotten that out of your system, you need to make this scrumptious pasta, which not only tastes like summer but looks like it too.  Yellow tomatoes, fresh basil, all mixed up with a light pan sauce made with garlic and Parmesan cheese and a teeny hint of red pepper.

All topped with toasted breadcrumbs.  Do not be tempted to skip the toasted breadcrumb part…it gives this dish the perfect crunchy touch.  Hurray for yellow tomatoes!

Pasta with Sweet Yellow Tomatoes, from Bon Appetit’s fabulous article on How To make Perfect Pasta! 

Pasta with Sweet Yellow Tomatoes
  • 4 slices white bread, stale or lightly toasted
  • 4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 8 oz. Sun Gold or cherry tomatoes
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt
  • 6 oz. capellini, spaghetti, or bucatini
  • ¾ cup finely grated Pecorino or Parmesan
  • 8 medium fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces
  1. Tear bread slices into small pieces. Process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. Bake in a 350° oven, stirring occasionally, until browned and dry, then transfer hot breadcrumbs to a large bowl. Drizzle with 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, season, and toss to coat.
  2. Heat 3 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add tomatoes, garlic, and red pepper flakes, season with salt, and cook, covered slightly and swirling pan often, until tomatoes blister and burst, 10-12 minutes. Press down on tomatoes to release their juices. Remove pan from heat and set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, bring 3 quarts water to a boil in a 5-qt. pot. Season with salt; add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until about 2 minutes before tender. Drain pasta, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking water.
  4. Transfer pasta to skillet with tomatoes; set over high heat. Add ½ cup pasta water. Cook, stirring and tossing often, until sauce thickens and begins to coat the pasta, about 1 minute. Stir in remaining oil, cheese, and half the basil and toss until sauce coats pasta and pasta is al dente. (Add more pasta water if sauce seems dry.) Add remaining basil, season with salt, and serve with breadcrumbs.


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  1. Rivki Locker (Ordinary Blogger) says

    I am still awaiting the return of the tomato. Tomato season hasn't hit New Jersey just yet. Beautiful photos!

  2. Anonymous says

    Did you cut up or peel the tomatoes? It's probably obvious to some…but it looks so scrumptious, I don't want to miss a step. Looking forward to this one…and many others.

  3. FramedCooks says

    I got big ones so I cut them up into large chunks (no peeling!), but if you get cherry tomatoes you can just toss them in there whole. :)

  4. Anonymous says

    With no response, I followed another recipe that suggested quickly boiling the yellow tomatoes then putting in an ice bath and removing the skins. Also, there was a suggestion to add the pasta water, which I just rinsed out in the sink…my bad!

    So my yellow tomato pasta was a bit dry, without the extra pasta water…but pretty yummy none the less.

    Oh! And the other recipe said to add vinegar, which I didn't. I'm not sure adding acidity would do anything good to this dish.

    I'll try it again, and follow the directions, without par boiling the toms, and keeping sufficient pasta water aside to loosen things up.

    thanks for the recipe!

  5. FramedCooks says

    Joyce: I don't peel them – good luck on your next try with this one!

    Deb: I would use at least a pint…but you can try with more if you like it extra tomato-y. :)


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