I keep whining about how it’s not easy to find good fresh basil around here in Gurgaon, and that it costs so much more than what it does in Bangalore. Thankfully the vendor near my house here had some beautiful fresh basil in stock as well as some plump fresh red chillies. It was obvious I had to use them both. A nice Thai curry came to mind, and even a noodle soup but then I remembered I had some whole wheat pasta that I’d been meaning to cook for a while. I did something really simple – grind basil, chillies and garlic into a paste. Which then I used as my pasta sauce base and added tomatoes and cream to make it the best sauce I’ve made. Ever!
Bunch of basil leaves – I’d say a cup, chopped
4 – 5 big fresh red chillies
5 cloves garlic
(Grind these into a paste with a dash of water. Store in fridge or use immediately)
1 tbsp olive oil
2 large tomatoes, chopped
2 cloves garlic, grated (alternatively you could use a tbsp of garlic paste)
1/4 cup fresh cream (you could try milk for a lighter version)
1 cup pasta cooking water
Salt to taste
Pepper for seasoning
Basil leaves for garnish
Optional – vegetables. I used a box of mushrooms, sliced.
Cook any pasta as per instructions on the package and keep aside along with a cup of the water.
Heat olive oil and add the chilli basil paste, and saute for 2 – 3 mins.
Add garlic and tomatoes. Cook for 5 mins till tomatoes break down.
Add the pasta water and vegetables at this point. I added mushrooms and let it cook.
Once mushrooms are cooked, add cream, salt and pepper.
Tip in the pasta into the chilli basil sauce and mix well.
Garnish with basil and serve hot!