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ross' aio e oio pasta
ross ross and friends, cooking

“This is one of my favorite dishes.  Even though pasta isn’t in vogue right now, I still love making this dish with my new wife (the better cook) or for a casual dinner with friends.  This dish really shines in the late summer when the tomatoes, parsley, and basil are at their peak. 
My Grandma Betty introduced us to this dish; it started out as a Friday night dish when Catholics could not eat meat.  It was my mother who truly perfected it.  Ideal accompaniments include grilled pork tenderloin and broccolinis (grilled or sautéed with garlic) and a nice bottle of Italian Barbera or Super Tuscan.”

Tip - it is very important to liberally salt the water before cooking the pasta since salt does not dissolve well in the olive oil based sauce.  Adding the reserved pasta water at the end also allow more of flavor to be incorporated into the pasta.


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“aio e oio pasta”

1 brown onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, crushed
4 ripe roma tomatoes, diced
1 bunch fresh basil, chopped
1 bunch Italian parsley, de-stemmed and chopped
1 lb pasta, i.e. penne
Red pepper flakes to taste (I like it hot)

Bring water to boil, add salt and pasta, cook to just before al’dente.  Reserve 1.5 cups of pasta water.  Drain pasta (do not rinse), toss with a small amount of olive oil in the colander.

Add 3 tablespoons olive oil to pan and bring to medium heat.  Add garlic and red pepper flakes, cook for 1 minute (do not allow to get brown).  Add onion, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning (optional).  Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, until onions sweat (do allow to get brown).  Add tomatoes, basil, and 1/2 of the parsley, cook 3-5 minutes, allowing tomatoes to soften.  Add pasta and reserved pasta water.  Stir liberally for 3 minutes (pasta should take up remaining liquid).  Add remaining parsley, toss well, serve immediately with generous helping of parmesan cheese.
 Previously cooked bulk sausage or shrimp can also be added just before the tomatoes.

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