Food, Wine, Rock & Roll

Part food blog, part jam session

This is a great dish to serve on days when you want something light and easy.  The really cool thing about this one is that it can either be a vegetarian dish or served with Italian sausage, depending on your mood or preferences.  I have used both sausage links and ground sausage; both are great, but I generally like the links better.


  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 5 to 6 Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 pound angel hair pasta
  • optional: mild Italian sausage links, sliced or ground Italian sausage, browned


Place tomatoes, salt & pepper, basil and balsamic vinegar in a non-reactive bowl and set aside for ten minutes, stirring occasionally.

Boil pasta until tender

Saute the garlic in olive oil until lightly browned (make sure you use a skillet large enough to hold the tomatoes later).  Drain the tomatoes and discard the remaining juice.  Toss the drained tomatoes in the skillet briefly just to heat them; they should retain their shape.

Toss the pasta and tomato mixture together.

Note: if you are including the sausage in the dish, lightly brown the sausage in the skillet before sauteing the garlic.  Remove and keep warm.  Toss with the pasta and tomato mixture.


Even though this is a lighter dish, the robustness of the Roma tomatoes combined with the balsamic vinegar is enough to stand up to a bolder red wine, especially if the sausage is included.  A few of my favorites are Bodega Norton’s Malbec or Il Bastardo’s Sangiovese di Toscana.


This dish requires bands that are more on the fun and funky side of the spectrum.  I absolutely love Blind Melon’s self titled album or even Paul Simon’s Negotiations and Love Songs.  If I’m really feeling funky, When I Woke by Rusted Root always delivers great tracks for dancing with abandon (just be careful when chopping the veg).

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