Farmers Market Recipe of the Week: Pasta Caprese

Pasta Caprese

Make this delicious pasta caprese with fresh ingredients from the U of U Farmers Market!

By Rachel Sanders, Sustainability Resource Center

The beginning of the school year is a crazy time for everyone! Thankfully, you don’t have to put much effort into finding delicious, healthy food on campus. The University of Utah Farmers Market will be holding its first market this Thursday, August 28 on Tanner Plaza, where we will be showcasing the best produce this season has to offer from 10 am-2 pm.

To kick off this year’s market, we’ll be featuring healthy, delicious recipes on the blog made with ingredients you can buy from our vendors. Check us out on Wednesdays to get the weekly recipe plus a preview of the goodies to come at the Thursday market.

Cheery tomatoes

Cherry tomatoes from the Edible Campus Gardens.

Today we’re helping you save time and energy by giving you a dish with only 7 ingredients that can be made in the time it takes to boil water and cook pasta. It additionally highlights the cherry tomatoes and basil that you’ll find at the Edible Campus Gardens’ stand this Thursday.

Don’t forget to stop by the market manager’s booth and “double your dollars” by buying market tokens for use at market vendor stands, while they last! This special opportunity is funded by a grant from the Sustainable Campus Initiative Fund (SCIF). Current U students and food stamp (SNAP) benefit users are eligible. It’s just another way we’ll help you to eat well this week.

See you at the market!

Rachel’s Pasta Caprese – Serves 2 (or 1 with leftovers for lunch!)

While the ingredients for the sauce in this dish are uncooked, the heat from the pasta slightly melts the cheese and takes the edge off of the raw tomatoes and basil; the result is a bright, summery pasta that is much more than the sum of its parts.

1 pint cherry tomatoes, or 3-4 large heirloom tomatoes
½ pound fresh mozzarella (we used Bocconcini, or small mozzarella cheeses)
Olive oil
½ pound pasta, such as fettucini or linguini
1 cup fresh basil leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
(optional) grated parmesan

  1. Put a pot of water on to boil.
  2. While waiting for the water to come to a boil, cut the cherry tomatoes in half (if using large heirloom tomatoes, cut them into 1/2-inch cubes) and place them in a large serving bowl. Cut the mozzarella into ½-inch cubes (if using Bocconcini, slice them in half) and add them to the bowl with the tomatoes.
  3. Drizzle the tomatoes and mozzarella with olive oil (I use around 2-3 tablespoons).
  4. Once the water has come to a boil, season the water with a generous pinch of salt, add the pasta, and cook according to the package instructions.
  5. While the pasta cooks, slice the basil; stack the leaves on top of each other, roll them up lengthwise, and then slice the roll widthwise into little ribbons (FYI, you’ve just cut a chiffonade of basil! So fancy). Set aside while the pasta finishes cooking.
  6. Drain the cooked pasta, reserving a little of the cooking water, and add the drained pasta to the serving bowl. Toss together, add the sliced basil, and toss again. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately, passing grated parmesan on the side if desired.

Variations:

  • Need more greens? Add arugula for a peppery bite.
  • Need some protein? Top each serving with a fried egg.

Rachel Sanders is the Sustainable Campus Initiative Fund coordinator for the Sustainability Resource Center.

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