Looking for a fresh, super tasty pasta dish done in 30 minutes? This Tomato Mozzarella Pasta with Pesto Crumbs fits the bill.
This dish is so simple to make, you will have it on weekly rotation in no time – I know I do!
To be quite honest I don’t cook many vegetarian main meals, but this flavour combo is such a standout with the oven roasted cherry tomatoes, basil pesto & mini mozzarella balls – I just cooked this pasta this morning to photograph it, and it’s now coming up to lunch time & I’m seriously looking forward to eating it!
The good news is that I made enough for dinner too! Think of me at about 7:30 tonight, finishing this pasta off with a nice crusty bread roll to mop up the juices…mmmmmmm
I just looked at the time, gotta go – it’s time for lunch!!!!
PS: As of this week I am now a full-time food blogger, after leaving my government job of 25 years. It’s definitely weird not going out to work each day, but I’m excited to start the “rest of my life” as my husband Peter puts it and make blogging my full time job. Not many people get the opportunity to turn their passion into a job, but I’m sure going to give it my best shot.
On a personal note I would like to thank Peter for giving me the courage to go down this road. Without his love and support Chef Not Required would still be just an idea in the back of my mind.
And if any of you guys have read my About Me page – then you’ll know that I’m REALLY looking forward to my first Monday (and Sunday night)…
Tomato Mozzarella Pasta with Pesto Crumbs
A quick, fresh & simple vegetarian pasta done in 30 minutes
- 250 g dry angel hair pasta
- 500g/1.1lbs mixed cherry/mini tomatoes
- 4 large garlic cloves unpeeled
- 2 tbsp + 1 tsp olive oil divided
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2/3 cup day old bread crumbs
- 1 1/4 tbsp basil pesto divided
- 200 g tub cherry bocconcini / mini mozzarella balls (usually approx 20) roughly torn
- 1/3 cup basil leaves firmly packed
- fresh lemon slices to serve
- fresh parmesan to serve
Pre heat oven to 210c / 410f (fan forced) & line a rimmed baking tray/sheet with baking/parchment paper, along with another smaller baking tray & set aside
Slice the hard flat end off each garlic clove, then flatten each clove (using the back of your kitchen knife - see notes) just enough to break the skin then add garlic cloves & tomatoes to prepared tray, drizzle with 2 tsp olive oil, add salt & pepper & mix around on tray to combine then roast for 25 mins
Meanwhile to prepare the pesto crumbs, combine bread crumbs, 1 tsp basil pesto & 1 tsp olive oil in a small bowl & mix until crumbs are well coated & pesto is evenly distributed. Place crumb mixture in an even layer on the second baking tray/sheet & set aside
When the tomatoes have been roasting for 20 mins, add second baking sheet with crumb mixture to the oven & continue to roast for the final 5 mins
Combine remaining 1 tbsp of basil pesto & 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil & set aside
Cook pasta in salted water according to packet directions
Remove tomatoes & crumb mixture from oven and remove skins from garlic. Add garlic to basil pesto mixture, mashing soft garlic well with a fork
Add tomatoes & any pan drippings to pasta, tossing to combine. Toss through bocconcini, basil leaves & garlic pesto mixture, sprinkle with crumbs & serve with fresh parmesan & lemon slices
To lightly crush the garlic cloves, just trim the hard end off the clove & put the unpeeled clove on a non-porous work surface, place the flat of your knife over the top of the clove and gently press down on the knife with the heel of your hand. The idea is to just break the skin so that it doesn't explode in the oven, but will still stay in basically one piece so that we can fish them out of the tray at the end without too much difficulty. The cloves will release a small amount of the oil when you lightly crush them, so it's a good idea to do this on a surface you don't mind getting garlic oil on.
*Please note that the amount of calories per serve is provided as a guide only, as ingredients and cooking methods can vary greatly*