Capellini with Cherry Tomatoes and Basil


  • ½ cup good olive oil, plus extra for the pasta pot
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic (6 cloves)
  • 1-2 pints small cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes
  • 18 large basil leaves, julienned (sliced in long strips)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh curly parsley
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • ¾ pound dried capellini or angel hair pasta
  • 1½ cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Extra chopped basil and grated Parmesan for serving


Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add two tablespoons of salt and a splash of oil to the pot. Meanwhile, heat the ½ cup of olive oil in a large (12-inch) sauté pan. Add the garlic to the oil and cook over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, basil, parsley, thyme, two teaspoons salt, the pepper, and red pepper flakes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for five to seven minutes, tossing occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to soften but don’t break up. While the tomatoes are cooking, add the capellini to the pot of boiling water and cook for two minutes, or according to the directions on the package. Drain the pasta, reserving some of the pasta water. Place the pasta in a large serving bowl, add the tomatoes and Parmesan, and toss well. Add some of the pasta water if the pasta seems too dry. Serve large bowls of pasta with extra basil sprinkled.