Pasta with Sun Dried Tomatoes, Basil, and Pine Nuts

The back to school season is finally over at UGA, and one third of the football season has passed.  Work is settling down as a result, and today is the first Saturday I’ve had to relax at home in some several weeks.  The textbooks and t-shirts that control my life are backing off for a few weeks.  What better to do than get up early, go to the farmer’s market, and make some lunch?  Nothing.  I went hoping to find some fruit, as my sweet tooth is complaining of severe neglect.  Unfortunately, not one stand had any sort of fruit to offer.  However, one had pecans (pecan pie coming soon!), and there were beautiful vegetables as always.  I was particularly attracted to some beautiful dried heirloom tomatoes, and some huge bunches of basil.  Already, I knew that pasta was imminent in my future.   

This is a very simple pasta, as most of my pasta recipes tend to be.  I wanted to really showcase the flavors of those lovely dried tomatoes as well as the basil.  This pasta makes a quick and light weekend lunch with minimal clean-up.  It’s also full of flavor!  Certainly better than the takeout that’s been fueling my evenings for the past couple of weeks…

Pasta with Sun Dried Tomatoes, Basil, and Pine Nuts


  • 1/2 lbs. farfalle or penne pasta
  • 1/4 C pine nuts
  • 1/3 dried tomatoes
  • 4 T olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1/3 C basil, chiffonaded
Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions.  While it cooks, soak the tomatoes in a bit of hot water from the pot to reconstitute them.  Toast the pine nuts in a dry pan over high heat until they start to take on some color.  When toasted, put to the side.  Swirl the olive oil in the bottom of a medium skillet.  Heat over medium heat, then add the garlic and crushed red pepper.  Saute gently for a couple minutes, but remove from heat before the garlic takes on color.  Stir in half of the basil.  When the sauce has cooled, add the tomatoes and ladleful of the starchy pasta water.  Drain the pasta and toss it in the skillet with the sauce, to coat it with the oil.  Mix well.  Serve immediately, sprinkling over the remaining basil and the pine nuts.  Season with salt and pepper.
Serves 2. 

4 thoughts on “Pasta with Sun Dried Tomatoes, Basil, and Pine Nuts

  1. We got a little bag of precious basil from our farmers’ market in January – the last ’till Valentine’s Day, we were told – and wanted to honour it in a good recipe. So glad we chose this one. It was wonderful! We’ll do it again in February! Thank you.

    • This makes my day! I feel rather honored that you chose to use the last of the basil in my recipe. This is one of my favorites; I’m glad you love it, too.

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