Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil

Friday 8 October 2021

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil

 Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil.  First of all I apologize for the not-so-good photos here today.  Apparently a blue bowl doesn't go well with food.  I will have to remember that in the future.

It gives things a cold tint, rather than warm. I hope you are able to see past all of that and recognize this dish for the very tasty dish that it is.

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 
The recipe is one that I downsized from one I found in a cookbook by Diane Rossen Worthington, entitled, Seriously Simple.  

This is a book I originally bought when I was working at the Manor in Kent. I thought it was an excellent book, and so I decided that I would replace it here in Canada and it is one of the few that I have been able to find.

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 
Many of the books I had to leave behind are no longer available, but to be honest I probably had far too many anyways. I chose to replace this one for several reasons.  First I like the way this lady cooks.

And secondly, it is filled with lots of really simple, easy recipes that taste really good. Simple ingredients. Simple methods.  Perfect execution.

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 
This particular recipe appealed to me for a variety of reasons. I had a punnet of cherry tomatoes that needed using up for one. I adore pasta for two.  And, three, it looked quick, easy and simple to do.

I also had a stale end of a French loaf that came in handy for the crumb mixture and some basil that I knew if I didn't use, would end up being thrown away. I hate waste.  This fabulous recipe is a testimony to the Italian penchant for using everything up!

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 

You don't really need anything complicated. Its all very simple really.

  • ripe cherry or grape tomatoes
  • fresh garlic
  • French bread crumbs
  • freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and black pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • dry pasta
  • fresh basil
Yes, it really is as simple as that. 

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 

I am always amazed when I see such simple ingredients come together to create a fantastically delicious dish. I don't know why! I shouldn't be! 

This is incredibly simple.  The hardest and most labor intensive part is halving the tomatoes! I can deal with that, can't you!

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 
You will need to halve the cherry tomatoes and put them into a roasting pan, large enough to hold everything when it is done. Since I halved the recipe I used a small roaster.

Scatter the tomatoes into the tin.  You then mix together some bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, garlic and seasoning.  This gets scattered over top of the tomatoes, along with a healthy drizzle of olive oil.

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 
The use of bread crumbs in this really doesn't surprise me.  The Italians are fond of using bread crumbs with pasta and it is often called the poor man's cheese.

The tomatoes are then roasted in a hot oven until they get all juicy and melty and the bread crumbs get a bit golden and crunchy.  This smells amazing when it is baking. Trust me on this.

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 
I cooked my pasta and chopped my basil while the tomatoes were roasting.  It was ready just as I was taking the tomato mixture out of the oven.

Ready to drain and then toss everything together, along with the basil.  The basil wilts a tiny bit in the heat of the pasta.  

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 
Basil is really difficult to chop. It also bruises very easily.  I tend to roll the leaves up very tightly in a cigar shape, then make some lengthwise cuts and then cut it crosswise.

That is what works best for me. Or you can also just cut it crosswise into a chiffonade. Both work well. It wilts in the heat of the pasta anyways, so its all good.

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil 
I was really pleased with how this turned out. It was delicious. You could add cooked shredded chicken to it to make it a bit more substantial if you wanted to.  You could also add some grilled shrimp or salmon.  Yummy!

Diane suggests adding a little Balsamic Syrup. I was going to do that and forgot. It would taste excellent I am sure. Maybe I will do that with the leftovers. She says the leftovers make a great salad chilled and served the day after with cold roast chicken, salmon or other fish.   

Quick, easy and incredibly delicious for very little effort.  That always spells winner to me! I hope that you will give it a go!

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil

Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes & Fresh Basil

Yield: 2 - 3
Author: Marie Rayner
Prep time: 10 MinCook time: 35 MinTotal time: 45 Min
This is a small batch recipe, but you can very easily double it to feed more. Its rustic in flavor and presentation and a great way to use up the last of the garden tomato glut.


  • 3/4 pound ripe cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1/4 cup (100g) fresh French Bread crumbs
  • 4 TBS freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 TBS olive oil
  • 1/2 pound (8 ounces/230g) Penne or fusilli pasta
  • a handful of fresh basil leaves finely chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 400*F/200*C/ gas mark 6. Put the tomato halves into a large baking dish.
  2. Combine the bread crumbs,  parmesan cheese, garlic, salt and black pepper together in a bowl.  Sprinkle evenly over top of the tomatoes.  Drizzle evenly with olive oil.
  3. Roast for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the mixture is bubbling, browned and slightly thickened.
  4. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to the boil. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions, just to al dente.  Drain well.
  5. Toss the pasta together with the roasted tomato mixture, stir in the chopped basil and serve immediately.
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  1. I really appreciate recipes like this and as we are big pasta lovers in this house, I will be trying this out in the coming week. A few key ingredients put together in a simple, unfussy way but still producing a lovely, tasty meal is a hallmark of Italian food and a big reason that I love it so much.

    Based on your recommendation, I downloaded the ebook of this title and will certainly use the Basalmic Syrup which in itself sounds like a very useful condiment! I'll let you know what we thought of it when I make it.

    1. I hope you enjoy it Marie. Its a lovely dish. Another favorite of mine in the book is Crostini with Mascarpone, Fresh Berries & drizzled Honey. Such a simple thing and so delicious! I have not made the balsamic syrup yet, but I should! xoxo

  2. Lovely recipe, Marie. I have all of the ingredients and I'm trying to stay away from butter. I think this calls from some salt and maybe a bit of dry herbs. Maybe oregano and rosemary-my favorite combination!

    Thanks always for inspiring recipes!

    1. I hope that you try it and enjoy it! You are very welcome! xoxo


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