Most Pasta alla Vodka recipes I have seen use canned tomato sauce to make this delightful spicy creamy tomato pasta sauce. But if you are a gardener, you may be facing an abundance of fresh tomatoes. If not, hit up a neighbor that may need to unload some or go to a farmers market. This recipe is quick and easy which makes it great for a summer week night. Toss in some leftover chicken or shrimp or tofu and make it a complete meal.
Nervous about adding vodka to something for the kids? Leave it out. All of my vodka got used to make Kahlua, so I made it without and it was still fabulous. And I used non-fat milk instead of cream because I am trying to slim down. Not as rich as the original, but adding a bit more basil and parsley makes up for it.
For those that don't know how to blanch a tomato, watch this quick video (pretend the peaches are tomatoes).
Pasta alla Vodka with Fresh Tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil
- 1 small Small onion (chopped (about ½ cup))
- 1 large Large clove garlic (crushed)
- 3 large Large tomatoes (blanched, peeled and coarsely chopped - about 3 cups)
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (adjust to taste)
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil leaves (or 1 teaspoon chopped fresh basil)
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup fresh parsley (chopped)
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese (grated)
- 3 tablespoons vodka (optional)
- 1 pound pasta (cooked according to package directions)
- In 3 quart sauce pan heat oil over medium high heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally 3 to 5 minutes until onion is translucent. Add tomatoes, red pepper and basil; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 5 minutes to blend flavors.
- Stir in heavy cream, parsley, 3 tablespoons grated cheese and vodka. Cook until heated through. Keep warm.
- Place pasta on platter and top with sauce and remaining cheese.
Until next time, happy eating.
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