Pasta with Heirloom Tomatoes, Goat Cheese, and Basil

When preparing this, start with half the vinaigrette. Cooked pasta absorbs dressing as it sits, so add the rest just before serving for a last-minute burst of flavor.

Pasta with Heirloom Tomatoes, Goat Cheese, and Basil
Photo: Hector Sanchez; Styling: Caroline M. Cunningham
Hands On Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
30 mins
8 to 10 servings


  • 12 ounces uncooked cavatappi pasta

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

  • 4 ounces country ham, thinly sliced

  • 1 1/2 pounds heirloom tomatoes, chopped

  • 4 cups loosely packed arugula

  • 1 cup crumbled goat cheese

  • 15 fresh basil leaves, cut into thin strips

  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

  • Herb Vinaigrette

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Prepare pasta according to package directions for al dente. Toss together pasta and 1 Tbsp. olive oil in a large bowl.

  2. Cook ham in remaining hot olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side or until crispy. Drain on paper towels. Break ham into small pieces.

  3. Add tomatoes, next 5 ingredients, and 6 Tbsp. vinaigrette to pasta; toss gently. Add salt and pepper to taste; top with ham. Just before serving, stir in remaining vinaigrette.

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