Except for evening attire, Sous Chef eschews wearing bow ties. He has no aversion to eating the pasta version and neither do I. So my interest was piqued by this Saturday’s edition of Weekend in a French Kitchen from Daniel Boulud’s Café Boulud Cookbook. We feature Andrew Carmellini’s Bow Tie Pasta with Tomato, Arugula, and Mozzarella. The recipe is attributed to Andrew Carmellini, the original chef de cuisine for Café Boulud where in six years won two James Beard Awards, Food & Wine’s Best New Chef awards, and a three-star review from the New York Times. He left to open an Italian restaurant in Robert DeNiro’s hotel in Tribecca where he earned his first Michelin Star.
This pasta dish features some of summer’s best ingredients: tomato, garlic, basil, mozzarella, and fresh parmesan. What’s not to like? The preparation is simple, like it is for so many pasta dishes. One just needs to allow approximately 35 minutes for the fresh tomatoes to reduce in a saucepan. The sauce suits most short or small pastas that have ridges or crevices to catch the sauce, so bow ties are not essential although they are most attractive. I found that this pasta works well cold the second day as a salad or side dish.
I love that Daniel Boulud suggests a wine or spirit pairing for the recipes in his book. For this pasta he recommended Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, a wine he describes as a highbrow Chianti. This is a classic wine pairing for pasta with tomato sauce. But I was time challenged and had to use whatever was on hand. It was a warm day here in Hell, so I decided to pair the pasta with a white wine and chose the 2013 Bougrier Anjou Blanc from the Loire Valley. It is a dry, medium bodied Chenin Blanc wine with notes of apple and citrus. Undoubtedly best paired with seafood, there was enough acidity to harmonize with the tomatoes. And it provided a refreshing counterpoint to the peppery arugula in the dish.