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spaghetii with raw tomato sauceRaw tomatoes give a tangy kick to this pasta dish by chef Paolo Vasapolli.

Simple tomato sauce makes use of nature’s bounty

Fresh tomatoes make a star appearance in a recipe from Paolo Vasapolli, executive chef in Food and Catering Services.

“You don’t have to simmer a sauce all day to get great flavour,” he says. “The key to this dish is making use of the freshest tomatoes you can get your hands on, whether from your own garden or — more likely this time of year — an Essex County greenhouse.”

Spaghetti al Pomodoro Crudo (spaghetti with fresh tomatoes)


  • 4 Roma tomatoes (or nice tomatoes from the garden)
  • 1/4 cup of good quality olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley (optional)
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 300-400 grams of spaghetti (or any other pasta)
  • Pinch chili flakes (optional)
  • Fresh Parmesan cheese for serving (optional)


  1. Wash the tomatoes and using a cheese grater, shred them into a bowl, seed, juice, and everything except the stem.
  2. In the bowl, stir together the tomatoes, oil, basil, parsley (if using), garlic, salt and pepper. Let stand for 10 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, fill a pot of water, add salt, bring to a boil and cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving a bit of the cooking water.
  4. Toss the spaghetti with the tomato mixture.  Add a little bit of the pasta water, top with chili flakes and Parmesan and serve.

Vasapolli notes that adding a protein such as shrimp makes the dish a complete meal. Find more recipes — as well as a place to submit your own — on the Healthy Eating website.