Truss Tomato, Basil & Balsamic Pasta Bake
- 15 medium to large Truss Tomatoes – with truss still attached
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Pinch of chilli flakes to taste
- 1 tbs smokey paprika
- Sea salt to taste
- 3 tbs balsamic vinegar
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed or finely grated
- 1 large bunch fresh basil leaves
- 200g buffalo mozzarella or bocconcini, roughly sliced or torn apart (you could also use feta or goats cheese)
- 85g parmesan, finely grated
- 500g pasta – you could use rigatoni, penne, fusilli, or shells
- Set aside 7 tomatoes with the truss still attached. While keeping the truss intact slice ¾ off the bottom of the tomatoes. We’ll use these to style the top of the pasta bake. If you don’t need the pasta bake to look ‘styled’ simply remove all the tomatoes from their truss and chop roughly.
- Remove the remaining tomatoes from their truss and roughly chop along with the bottom ¾ of the tomatoes from the previous step.
- Add the chopped tomatoes to a large deep baking dish then add olive oil, chili and smokey paprika. Stir to combine.
- Place the 7 tomatoes with their truss still attached (from step 1) on top of the chopped tomatoes. Bake the tomatoes for 45 minutes at 200C / 390F.
- When the tomatoes have almost finished baking, begin to cook the pasta. Cook the pasta 4 minutes under the instructed time on the packet. The pasta will continue to cook in the oven when we bake it. Once the pasta is cooked drain and set aside.
- Remove the baked tomatoes from the oven and then gently lift and set aside the tomatoes with their truss still attached.
- While the baked tomatoes are still warm out of the oven stir through the garlic, balsamic, basil, and half of the mozzarella and half of the parmesan. Add the cooked pasta and stir through.
- Top the pasta with the remaining mozzarella, the remaining parmesan, the 7 baked tomatoes with their truss attached, a few extra basil leaves, some sea salt, black pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil.
- Bake at 200C for 15 minutes or until golden.
- Serve with a leafy green salad and fresh crusty bread.
Recipe by Gather & Feast