30 Clove Pomodoro Sauce


30 Clove Pomodoro Sauce

Cook Time: 90 MINUTES

Serves: 6 PEOPLE


  • 2 boxes Banza rigatoni
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 heads of garlic
  • 2 cans, 28-oz each, whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp crushed red chili flakes
  • 2 basil sprigs
  • Kosher salt
  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Cut the root stem off of the garlic bulbs (leaving full bulb intact and cloves still in skins). Drizzle with olive oil and wrap in aluminum foil. Cook for 1 hour. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  2. Heat ½ cup of olive oil over low. Add fennel and chili flakes, cooking until fragrant. Using your hands, squeeze the whole peeled tomatoes to break them up into large chunks and add to the oil. Squeeze the garlic cloves from their skins directly into the tomato mixture.
  3. Using a fork or the back of a spoon, crush half the garlic cloves. Bring sauce to a simmer over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until it is slightly thickened, about 20 minutes. Add the basil, season well with salt, and simmer for about five more minutes, until the sauce is richly flavored.
  4. Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling water, cook the Banza until al dente. Drain, reserving some of the pasta cooking liquid and rinse the Banza. Return pasta to the pot used to cook it in and about 2 cups of the sauce, stirring well and adding a little pasta cooking water if necessary. Refrigerate or freeze the remaining sauce for another use.

30 cloves of garlic might seem like a lot but you'll be surprised by the sweetness the cloves take on when roasted long and slow in the oven in their skins. When they're done cooking, allow them to cool, then press on the uncut end of the bulb, and the cloves will slip right out into the sauce. Recipe adapted from Chef Missy Robbins and posted on Bloomberg.com.