Basta Pasta was a great italian place in San Francisco . Sadly they went out of business a few years ago. Lucky for me when I was visiting the last time I asked the chef for the recipe, it came back on a greasy slip of paper with the basic ingredients and no amounts! I've only recently in the past few years enjoyed cooking so decided to give it a whirl! It tastes almost identical to theirs with much tweaking. The biggest thing with this is to use the BEST ingredients you can, i.e. tomatoes, wine, fresh basil. Its really easy to make so don't let the list of ingredients scare you away. For the pasta I have used fetticini, vermiccili, capelini etc...all taste great...cause of the sauce ;-) Cooking time is including the simmering of sauce.
- olive oil, for cooking
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 4 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 (28 ounce) can Cento Italian tomatoes
- 4 (15 ounce) canshunts diced tomatoes with basil oregano and garlic
- 1 cup red wine, good quality (I use a Cabernet Sauvignon)
- 1 1⁄2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 12 basil leaves, washed and chopped or 1 1⁄2 teaspoons dried basil
- 3 pinches red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon vodka (optional)
- 1 tablespoon sugar (optional, we like our sauce on the sweeter side)
- 3 teaspoons pesto sauce (see note below)
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons italian seasoning
- 1 pinch sea salt or 1 pinch kosher salt
- 8 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter
- 1⁄4 cup whipping cream
- 1⁄4-1⁄2 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add oil, onion, garlic, red pepper flakes and saute being careful not to let the garlic brown.
- Add tomatoes, wine, chicken broth, basil, sugar, pesto, vodka if using. Bring to a slight boil then turn down heat to medium-low and simmer.
- The longer you simmer this sauce the better it is! Reduce sauce by 1/4 simmering several hours, then turn to low.
- Add the chilled butter (butter will thicken sauce slightly) and stir through.
- Cook your choice of pasta al dente. While cooking pasta add the whipping cream and parmesean cheese and heat through.
- Add drained cooked pasta to pan and mix throughly and heat through.
- Serve with parmesean cheese grated on top. A loaf of rustic bread and salad goes great!
- Note: (I freeze my pesto in ice cube trays and use 1 to 2 cubes).