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Pasta with Tomatoes, Arugula and Parmesan

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This recipe is adapted from a recipe served at Arancio d’Oro in Rome.

Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients:

1 pound of pasta, fresh or a good quality dry pasta such as Cipriani Tagliarelle Egg Pasta

4 cups of baby arugula, cleaned and dried, you can substitute fresh basil, watercress, or baby spinach

4 ripe tomatoes, cleaned and coarsely chopped, about 1/2 pound

2 to 4 cloves of garlic, (to taste) thinly sliced

extra-virgin olive oil

Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

a pinch of lemon zest, use a microplane or finely chopped (optional)

Method:

Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil.  While you are waiting, shave several ounces of the Parmigiano-Reggiano into a warmed serving bowl (use a vegetable peeler or a sharp knife).  Add the arugula, tomatoes, lemon zest, if using, a pinch of salt and about 1/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil.  Toss to blend and let rest while the pasta is cooking.

Add a pinch of sea salt to the boiling water, add the pasta and stir.  Cook the pasta until tender but firm, about 2 to 3 minutes for fresh pasta or according to the package directions. Drain the pasta and place in a warm serving dish.  Add the tomato mixture to the pasta and mix.  Add sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Serve immediately with some additional shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano.

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Note:

The same tomato mixture, without the pasta, could also be served as a topping for bruschetta or add a bit of lemon juice or vinegar and serve it as a salad, perhaps with some Buratta.