This pasta only has a few ingredients but it is packed with flavor. It's perfect for a summer dinner but since grape tomatoes are usually available all year round, you can make this summery dish any time of year. I like it with cavatappi pasta but any similar size pasta would work well, even cavatelli or gnocchi. You could also substitute diced fresh mozzarella for the burrata if you prefer.
4 to 6 ounces (1 ball) burrata cheese or cubed fresh mozzarella 1/4 cup olive oil 4 large garlic cloves, minced 1/2 teaspoon dried basil 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 2 cups grape tomatoes Salt and pepper 8 ounces cavatappi, fussili col buco, or similar size pasta 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
Take the burrata or mozzarella out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes before serving to allow it to warm up.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic, dried basil and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the grape tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, and toss them gently with the olive oil to coat. Cook the tomatoes for 20 to 25 minutes until they almost all burst. Stir occasionally and increase the heat a little if the tomatoes are not bursting.
In the meantime, cook the pasta in boiling salted water. Reserve about 1 cup of the pasta water and drain.
Add about 1/2 cup of the pasta water to the tomatoes in the skillet; stir to combine. Add the drained pasta. Toss to combine the pasta with the sauce. If it seems too dry add a little more of the pasta water. Don't add too much, you don't want it soupy. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the fresh basil. Transfer the mixture to a serving bowl. Break the burrata into pieces and add it to the pasta. If you are using fresh mozzarella instead, add it now. Stir the cheese in as much or as little as you like. Serve topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.