Capellini with Tomatoes and Basil

The Recovery Room. That’s what our family room has been for the past 6 days. Started with Brooke’s sinus surgery. Two days later, Stephen had his tonsils removed. Ouch. Lots of time together on the twin sofas. Loads of cold drinks, soft food, Kleenex, ice cream, movies, straws, visitors, Slurpees, Concretes and Rainbows (Btown treats).
Now that I’m a pretend nurse, and a teacher (did I tell you Jake has been homeschooling since mid November??) cooking time is a bit more limited. Found this recipe in House Beautiful magazine and knew I would love it. Why? It made the cut for ABK’s “Seriously Simple” category. It takes about 10-15 minutes, pan to table. And it’s absolutely delicious.
Made this last night, for the second time in a week.
New favorite dish: this is it.

See this tool? It’s called a microplane grater.
If you don’t have one, you need one. Now.

Capellini with Tomatoes and Basil

Capellini with Tomatoes and Basil

Author: Si Foster


  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1-2 cloves minced garlic
  • 4 pints small cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2-3 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves, or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • ¾ pound dried capellini or angel hair pasta, fresh or dried
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add two tablespoons of salt to the pot.
  • Meanwhile, heat the ½ cup of olive oil in a large (12-inch) saute pan. Add the garlic to the oil and cook over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, thyme, two teaspoons salt, ground pepper, and red pepper flakes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for five minutes, tossing occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to soften.
  • While the tomatoes are cooking, add the capellini to the pot of boiling water and cook for two minutes (if using fresh), or according to the directions on the package. Be careful about overcooking the pasta. Using tongs, remove the pasta from the pot of water and add to the cooked tomato mixture in the saucepan. Don’t worry about water on the pasta, the dish needs a little of the pasta water to have the right consistency.
  • Pour the pasta and tomatoes into a large serving bowl.
  • Add the Parmesan and fresh basil, and toss well.
  • Serve immediately with additional grated Parmesan cheese.

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