I'm one of those hyper-organized bloggers that preps posts a week or two ahead of time. I like to have things scheduled in case life gets busy or I'm just not up for writing. But this recipe is different. It's entirely dependent on the seasons, and if I waited until late September, you might have missed your chance entirely. So I'm hoping some of you still have juicy tomatoes and fresh corn around to send off summer in style.
Let's discuss Anne Burrell for a moment. I know there are varied opinions about the personalities of Food Network chefs, but let's focus on the positive. You might have caught a glimpse of Anne as Mario Batali's sous chef on Iron Chef America, but she also hosts Secrets of a Restaurant Chef. Coming from the restaurant business, Anne makes some seriously good food and gives home cooks tips and tricks along the way. I love almost everything she makes. I also love her unique vernacular: "big fat finishing oil," "BTB RTS" (bring to boil/reduce to simmer), and my personal favorite, when she exclaims that the garlic has "fulfilled its garlic destiny." She loves to cook and it shows.
Her version of this pasta used rock shrimp, and after tasting my own I could see where the seafood would be a brilliant addition. But even without it, I loved this dish immensely. We enhanced our meal with a glass of Mazzocco Sauvignon Blanc, and its peach notes were only enhanced by the fresh summer ingredients.
SUMMER PASTA WITH TOMATOES AND GRILLED CORN
Recipe adapted from Anne Burrell
Chicken stock adds depth to the sauce, providing a luscious coating of summer flavors for the pasta. Toss fresh herbs in at the end; basil or parsley will brighten up the dish.
2 ears corn, shucked
Extra-virgin olive oil
2 whole garlic cloves, peeled
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1 pint cherry tomatoes
1 cup low-sodium or homemade chicken stock
1 pound spaghetti
Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish
Drizzle olive oil over a hot grill and sear the corn until it's dark brown on all sides. Cut the kernels off the cob and reserve in a small bowl.
Coat a large, wide pot over with olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper. When the garlic becomes golden brown, toss in the cherry tomatoes and coat them with the oil. Add 1/2 cup of the chicken stock and season with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat slightly and let the tomatoes simmer until they start to burst and release their juices; about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove and discard the garlic. Add the corn and parsley and stir to combine.
While the tomatoes cook, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente. Drain, reserving a bit of cooking liquid, and add pasta into the pot with the tomatoes and corn. Toss to combine, and add reserved cooking liquid the sauce needs to be thinned. Transfer to plates and serve sprinkled with grated Parmesan cheese.