Roast garlic and fresh tomato sauce for pasta

A quick and dirty recipe for gardeners with a glut of garlic and tomatoes. This pasta sauce makes the most of each ingredient – the garlic is roast for a sweet, fragrant mellow taste, and the tomatoes, fresh and juicy out of the garden. I am having unbelievable success this year with Tumbler tomatoes, which do very well in a pot.

If you’re cooking this for guests, you may want to seed and peel the tomatoes, but we enjoy the tomatoes in this just chopped into chunks. I used angel hair pasta – use whatever’s in your cupboard.

To serve two, you’ll need:

1 bulb garlic
1 large knob butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small handful thyme
1 small handful oregano
1 large handful basil
1 lb tomatoes, chopped roughly
Salt and pepper

Roast the garlic whole with the thyme and oregano tucked around it, the butter and olive oil smeared and drizzled over it, for 40 minutes at 180° C. When the garlic comes out of the oven, set it aside to cool a little while you put the pasta on to cook and cut the tomatoes into large dice.

Squeeze the soft cloves of garlic out of their hard skins into a serving bowl. If your garlic is very fresh, you can leave the skins in to nibble on too. Mine was straight out of the ground, so the skins went into the bowl. Tear the basil roughly and put it in the bowl along with the herbs, butter and oil from the garlic dish and the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper, and put the steaming hot pasta on top of everything. Mix gently and serve immediately.

7 Replies to “Roast garlic and fresh tomato sauce for pasta”

  1. This sounds delicious! You can’t beat fresh tomatoes from the garden, especially if they’re still warm from the sun when you eat them… yum.

    If you’ve got a real glut, you might want to try making Pappa al Pomodoro, a bread and tomato soup hailing from Tuscany. I found a recipe online here (, but books like The Silver Spoon (naturally) and the River Cafe series also have variants. It’s wonderfully tasty, and straightforward to boot. I think it’s better served cold, but you can have it hot too. Healthy comfort food: how much better can you get?

  2. Ooh – excellent idea. I’ll look at doing that. I also made a panzanella at the weekend (I’m refining the recipe pre blogging it); the affinity tomatoes have with bread is a happy thing I intend to exploit.

  3. Tomatoes were one of the first solid foods I could ever be persuaded to eat when I baby (I was a *difficult* child). Everything else would be pushed away in disgust, but I’d bounce up and down eager in my high-chair the moment a tomato appeared in the room. I can still devour obscene amounts of tomatoes at one sitting…

  4. I just got back last night, and in between sleeping and paying e.d.f bills I haven’t had time to food-shop yet. So I’m trying an aglio olio pepperoncino version of this with the garlic roasted. I’ll let you know how it goes!

    ben x

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