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Thursday, July 18, 2013

[Cold Summer Spaghetti] Refreshing Fresh tomato Pasta for a hot summer day

It's so hot and humid. One of my coworkers who had gone outside came back and told me, "C'est l'enfer, dehors" (It's hot as hell outside). That is exactly why I just refuse to get out of the building during the day. I prefer keeping my cardigan, because of air conditioning, all day. It has been hot like this in Ottawa since last Sunday. Ottawa is under extreme heat alert until tomorrow. And hopefully it will cool off in the weekend. Unlike Mr. D who thinks 2 weeks of summer is more than enough, I like all the four seasons. I can handle the heat quite okay. The problem with me is the humidity. Humid air tires me who gets tired rarely otherwise. The average humidex in Ottawa has been 10 degrees higher than the real temperature. While the real temperature was only(?) 32 degrees C this afternoon, humidex was 42 degrees C. It felt like 42 degrees outside...  Oh, by the way, I didn't know that the humidex, short for humidity index, was therm used only in Canada. "The humidex is an index number used by Canadian meteorologists to describe how hot the weather feels to the average person, by combining the effect of heat and humidity." (Reference:

In this sweltering heat, even though we all like pasta, I don't feel eating any warm food, including pasta. Still I make pasta, but with some cold sauce(?). The best thing about this pasta is that you can make it ahead of time to leave it in the fridge so that it will be cold and ready for the dinner when you come back home from the work! Wouldn't it be a nice treat for yourself? But, of course, you can make it right there and then. It will be still cold enough :) I have made this a few dozen times, at least. My very Italian friend Mila tasted it and asked for the recipe. So I would say it's quite good enough to be liked by an Italian who lives on pasta. :)

Here goes Colleen's cold summer spaghetti recipe!

(4-6 servings)
1 pound spaghetti
2 large ripe tomatoes
4 or more tablespoons sliced black olives
2-3 anchovy fillets
2 tablespoons caper
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
fresh Italian parsley, chopped
10-15 fresh basil leaves, torn or chopped


1. Over a medium heat, add about 2 tablespoons olive oil. Then add onions and cook diced onion until translucent. 

Leave aside to let cool.

2. Cut a + on the bottom of the tomato.

3. Place a pot of water on the stove and bring it to a boil. Then, dip the tomato on a slotted spoon in the boiling water. Remove it after 15-20 seconds or when the skin begins to peel.

4. It will peel easily.

5. Chop anchovies, dice tomatoes, and chop & tear parsley and basil leaves.

6. In a large bowl, add diced tomatoes, olives, onions, anchovy, caper, Italian parsley and basil. Add red wine vinegar and olive oil, and whisk. Season with salt and pepper. Leave it in the fridge for an hour.

7. Meanwhile, in a large pot of salted water, cook the pasta until al dente. Drain and rinse with cold running water. 

8. Toss the pasta with the chilled sauce. Adjust the seasoning, to taste. 

You can eat right away or, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for later.

It's a refreshing dish on a hot summer day. I highly recommend  it!


Cold Summer Spaghetti


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