A Cold Dish for a Hot Summer

Those of us in the northeast--and in many other parts of the country, have been sweltering these last few days. If like me, you're having heat fatigue and can't eat one more meal from the grill, I hereby offer an easy solution: a lovely cold pasta dish featured in my current Italian Kitchen Mystery. And doesn't it look yum?

finished pasta dish

It's super easy and super tasty, a true make-and-go dish. Here's the recipe:

 Cold Tomato Sauce with Arugula

This recipe makes more than enough “sauce” for a pound of pasta. It’s also good the next day as a cold pasta salad—add olives, cubed cheese, and chickpeas to add some variation.

            --approximately 10 fresh plum tomatoes

            --one 5 oz. package of fresh arugula or other hardy baby greens

            --3/4-1 cup of olive oil

            --1-2 cloves of garlic, depending on taste

            --sea salt and freshly grated pepper to taste

1-Chop tomatoes, arugula, and garlic well; place in large bowl and mix thoroughly. At this stage, I season with two generous teaspoons of sea salt and several twists of the pepper grinder. Before serving, taste and adjust seasonings to preference.

2-Pour olive oil over the mixture. Let the mixture marinate for at least three hours, taking care to stir the mixture several times. The arugula will soften and sweeten in the oil and juices from the tomatoes. Here's how the marinate should look (and how gorgeous is that?):

marinated veg close up

3-Serve over hot pasta of your choice (I used the double twists known as gemelli) with a generous amount of grated Romano cheese.

Buon Appetito!