TCP Kitchen
Primo Pasta
Find yourself in hot water at mealtime? Noodles to the rescue!

Linguine With Fresh Basil and Brie
Ralph Duke

To Rinse or Not to Rinse

One of the great debates among pasta enthusiasts is whether to rinse cooked noodles after they’ve been drained in a colander. Cooked noodles have a starchy coating that adds flavor (particularly with whole-grain pasta) and creates a sticky surface that helps absorb the sauce. The only time you should rinse cooked noodles is when you’re making pasta salad or stir-frying noodles (such as rice or soba noodles). That’s because cold water stops the cooking process (so the pasta won’t get mushy) and allows a looser texture so the pieces in the final dish will not clump together. —PD

When I ask my kids what they want for dinner, I already know they’ll answer, “Noodles!” Pasta is our happy place, and clearly we’re not alone. Around the globe, from soba to spaghetti, home cooks know that noodles are the beginning of endless nourishing dinner possibilities. Best of all, many of the most appealing recipes can be made in minutes. For instance, at OHMS Cafe & Bar, an upscale bistro in historic downtown Amarillo, chef Mary Fuller’s Linguine with Fresh Basil and Brie has been a staple since 1992. It’s the perfect lazy-days-of-summer recipe that you can assemble in the time it takes for the water to come to a boil.

Linguine With Fresh Basil and Brie

OHMS Chef/Owner Mary Fuller encourages you to use this recipe as a guide and adjust ingredients to your personal preference.

Handful of fresh basil leaves
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/3 cup olive oil
1 pound dry linguine
2 Roma tomatoes, diced into 1-inch pieces
4 ounces Brie cheese, sliced
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground pepper

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

2. Meanwhile, combine the basil, garlic and olive oil in a food processor and pulse on the chop setting to combine. (The mixture doesn’t need to be smooth.) Transfer mixture to a large mixing bowl.

3. When the water is boiling, add the linguine and cook according to package instructions until it’s al dente.

4. Drain and immediately toss the hot noodles with the basil mixture, tomatoes, Brie, Parmesan, pepper and salt to taste, until cheese begins to melt.

5. Serve with an additional drizzle of olive oil, if desired.

Serves 4–6.

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