Super Simple "Go To' Tomato And Basil Spaghetti

  • Spaghetti
  • Tomatoes
  • Basil
  • Garlic
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Sugar

Cooking should never be complicated and if you use the right high quality ingredients and follow some simple steps you can end up with an absolutely amazing mind blowing end result. There is a bit of arseing around in the prep for this recipe that will take you about 20 minutes but as I sat there eating the end result, I just thought to myself how completely worthwhile it all was. This isn’t rocket science but it is absolutely gorgeous.


Step 1

Get a decent Italian brand pasta and some good parmesan. The other key ingredient is the tomatoes. The trick here is to give them a good smell. The tomatoes should be pungent, fresh and smell really tomatoey (I know that sounds stupid but its a trick I was taught in Italy and it works).

Step 2

Using the sharp end of the knife cut that little yucky eye out of the middle of the tomato.

Step 3

Once you've done that with all the tomatoes they should look like this.

Step 4

Now flip them over. We are going to take the skin off them because that tastes really bad in the sauce. Mark a little X on the bottom of each tomato but barely cutting into the flesh.

Step 5

Lash a pot of water on to boil.

Step 6

Peel the garlic. Be generous with this and get 2 huge ones like mine or a few smaller ones.

Step 7

Chop them so as they are all tiny little even pieces.

Step 8

When the water comes to a furious boil lash the tomatoes in. You need to have your skates on at this stage because you only want them in there for about 8-10 seconds max.

Step 9

Whip them out and into a strainer and cool them down with cold water. All we are doing here is getting the skin off them and this has nothing to do with cooking them. It's a strange chef like technique and seems like a load of trouble but trust me it makes all the difference.

Step 10

You'll now be able to gently peel all the skin off the tomatoes. Should peel off in one gentle motion.

Step 11

Strip all the skin off them so as you are left with nothing but flesh.

Step 12

Cut the tomatoes in half.

Step 13

Now all you want to do is gently squeeze the tomatoes and get the juice out of the middle of them.

Step 14

You should be left with absolutely nothing but pure flesh.

Step 15

Chop it nice and fine. You'll be happy to know that is the prep nearly all done now. Time to cook!

Step 16

Lash on a big frying pan with a load of olive oil over a slow heat. Lash in the garlic.

Step 17

When the garlic starts slowly frying up and is smelling incredible lash the tomatoes in. You can turn it up a bit but not too high. Slow to medium heat.

Step 18

Lash the spaghetti into hot furiously boiling water and give it a good stir so as it doesn't stick together.

Step 19

The sauce will actually cook pretty quickly as the tomatoes start to break down slowly. It will start turning into a sauce naturally without you really having to do very much!

Step 20

Grab a huge handful of basil and roll it up into a cigar type shape.

Step 21

Slice it up as thin as you possibly can. Serious knife skills needed here. Just go nice and slow.

Step 22

When the sauce is getting mushy (technical term) add in a spoonful of sugar just to compliment the acidity of the tomatoes.

Step 23

Add a spoonful of the pasta water just to thin it out a little.

Step 24

The tomato sauce will just have magically formed itself. You might need to mash up some of the bigger pieces of tomato. Strain the pasta off and chuck it in with the pasta.

Step 25

Lash in the basil.

Step 26

Give the whole thing a good stir. Season with salt and pepper and then take it straight off the heat.

Step 27

Serve the pasta up and grate a little parmesan over the top of it.

Step 28

Little sprig of basil up on top and this is as pretty as a picture. Absolutely Delicious!!

Screen-Shot-2014-05-27-at-12.14.491 1

Look at that last picture and tell me you don’t want to lick the screen. Tomatoes and basil go together like Kim and Kanye or Ronaldo and Bale. There are no hidden secrets here and yours will end up tasting and looking as good as this if you follow all the steps. Grab some awesome smelling tomatoes, a big bunch of basil and give this a lash. Truly Amazeballs!

Written By

Niall Harbison

Niall founded our sister site Lovin' Dublin with a few simple aims: discover new places to eat in Dublin and share simple recipes cooked up in his kitchen.