Roasted Tomato and Anchovy Spaghetti

Maybe it makes me a bad Asian to say this considering her recent controversy, but I really do like cooking out of Alison Roman's cookbooks. Dining In is a lot of fun to read, and the recipes are solid. This twist on spaghetti with marinara sauce was so good we wanted to lick our plates. The picture above was actually taken the day after I made this when I reheated it for lunch (and for the record, it reheats beautifully).

Roasted Tomato and Anchovy Spaghetti
(Very barely adapted from Dining In by Alison Roman)

  • 3 pounds small-medium tomatoes (such as hothouse or vine-ripened)
  • 1 1/2 cup olive oil, plus 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 cloves crushed garlic
  • A few sprigs fresh thyme or oregano
  • 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • Crushed red pepper flakes
  • 4 anchovy fillets
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 pound spaghetti or bucatini

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. 
  2. Halve the tomatoes crosswise and place them in a 3-quart baking dish, cut-side up. 
  3. Cover with 1 1/2 cups olive oil and add the crushed garlic and oregano or thyme sprigs to the baking dish. Season with salt and pepper. Roast tomatoes until they are shriveled and caramelized, about 3 1/2 hours.
  4. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. 
  5. While waiting for the water to boil, heat the 1/4 cup olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and season with salt and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is cooked through but not browned, 10-15 minutes. 
  6. Add the anchovies and stir until they have melted into the pan, about 30 seconds. Add the tomato paste and cook until it turns a brick-red color and sticks a bit to the bottom of the pan, about 90 seconds. 
  7. Add the slow-roasted tomatoes, scraping up any bits on the bottom of the skillet. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook until sauce thickens. Season to taste and keep warm. 
  8. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in boiling water until just al dente. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta cooking water and drain the pasta. 
  9. Add the pasta along with 1/2 cup pasta cooking water to the skillet and toss to coat. Cook, tossing occasionally, until the pasta is well-coated in sauce. Serve with lots of Parmesan cheese. 

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