Pasta with Burst Cherry Tomato Sauce and Fried Caper Crumbs
This pasta with burst cherry tomato sauce is ideal summer eating. It's filled with bright, fresh flavors and an addictive fried caper breadcrumb topping.
Yield: 4-6 servings
For the topping
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup capers, rinsed and dried
  • 1 anchovy fillet, rinsed, minced
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • ⅛ tsp kosher salt
  • ⅛ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ cup minced parsley
For the pasta
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 anchovy fillets, rinsed and minced
  • 2 lb cherry tomatoes
  • 1½ tsp kosher salt, plus salt for pasta water
  • ¼ tsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 lb ziti
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 cup fresh basil, torn if large
For the crumb topping
  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the capers and the anchovy. Cook, stirring often, until the capers are crispy and shrunken. Remove the capers from the pan to a paper towel-lined plate using a slotted spoon, leaving as much oil in the pan as possible. Return the skillet to medium heat. Add the panko, salt, and black pepper to the pan. Cook, stirring constantly, until the panko is golden and crispy, about 4-5 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl and stir in the parsley and caper mixture. Set aside.
For the pasta
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. While the water is coming to a boil, heat the oil, garlic, and anchovies in a large pan over medium heat. Cook until the garlic is lightly browned, about 4-5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, salt, sugar, and red pepper flakes to the pan. Stir to combine. Cover the pan and increase the heat to medium-high. Cook for 10-15 minutes without stirring, or until the tomatoes have started to break down into a sauce.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta to desired consistency. Drain, reserving ½ cup pasta cooking water. Return the pasta to the pot. Remove from the heat. Stir the butter and tomato mixture into the pasta until it starts to form a light sauce. Add reserved pasta water as needed to get sauce to desired consistency. Stir in the basil and season to taste with salt and black peppers. Serve topped with the crumb topping, adding it just before serving.
Recipe from Cook's Illustrated
Recipe by Joanne Eats Well With Others at