August 9, 2012

Spaghetti with Raw Tomato Basil Sauce {Powernap}

Spaghetti with Raw Tomato Basil Sauce

This is the latest installment of my Powernap column. The series where I share quick, easy food that can be made for all kinds of situations. Powernaps are short and sweet, and so are these recipes. These are the things I make in a jiffy when I need a quick snack, am in the mood for a recipe experiment, or simply need to clean out the pantry.

Reading Bon Appetit usually sends me over the edge with inspiration. I hardly ever finish that magazine without folding down at least half a dozen recipes to try. But now, given my current state, the allure of my favorite food magazine is working overtime and when the most recent issue came I think I folded down every other page. That is not an exaggeration. One of the first things to catch my eye was this awesome raw tomato sauce. What a genius idea for summer when nobody wants to turn on the stove and the freshest, ripest tomatoes are widely available.

A true powernap recipe, this sauce comes together in a jiffy. When I made it in Cooperstown I methodically crushed tomatoes for about four minutes and then left it to marinate for the rest of the day. To infuse it with some of our favorite flavors also I dropped in some halved garlic cloves and a bunch of torn basil. I ended up removing the garlic before serving which was perfect. It had infused the sauce with just the right amount of flavor without being too overpowering. We chose to serve this with spaghetti since it is my daughter’s current favorite pasta shape. We loved how it absorbed the sauce inside and out and the sauce got tangled up in the long strands. . Every bite truly tasted like summer – the flavor of which I will never, ever tire.


Penne with Raw Tomato Basil Sauce

adapted from Bon Appetit


4.5 to 5 pounds ripe tomatoes (either plum or your favorite red variety – just make sure the weight is between 4.5 and 5 pounds)
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
6 to 8 fresh basil leaves, roughly torn
1 or 2 garlic cloves, cut in half


1. Roughly chop the tomatoes in to small chunks and discard the pulp and seeds. If you want to core the tomatoes, squeeze out the pulp and seeds, and then place the tomatoes in the food processor that works too. Pulse the tomatoes until they resemble small chunks about ½-inch in size. Place the tomatoes into a large mixing bowl.

2. In a small bowl whisk together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and red wine vinegar. Then pour into the tomatoes and stir well. Add the torn basil and garlic cloves and stir everything together. Cover the mixing bowl and allow it to sit for at least one hour or up to five at room temperature.

3. Make one box of spaghetti, or your favorite pasta, according to directions and drain it completely. Remove the garlic cloves from the sauce. Toss the hot pasta with the fresh tomato sauce and serve immediately.

Naptime Notes

Naptime Recipe Serving ideas

We loved this with a simple side of green beans and corn. It was a great meatless meal for summer. I think it might also be great when served over fish.

Naptime Stopwatch

15 minutes prep time, no cook time, 1 hour marinate time (at least)

Naptime Reviews

This was a huge hit with everything, even, interestingly, my daughter who usually only likes pureed tomato sauce!


3 Responses to “Spaghetti with Raw Tomato Basil Sauce {Powernap}”

  1. Beth S. says:

    Very similar to the one Norah Ephron published in her mid 1980s novel Heartburn. A delicious favorite!!  (And congrats, Kelsey, on your news!)

  2. OrGreenic says:

    for the spaghetti with raw tomato basil sauce recipe. Great idea for a quick

  3. […] about it – most vegetables, at least, can be eaten raw. How about some spaghetti with fresh, raw tomato and basil sauce? Or for something a little more adventurous, how about a raw broccoli raisin […]