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Shells with Fresh Heirloom Tomato Sauce

Shells with Fresh Heirloom Tomato SauceIt doesn’t take much to present something light, fresh and seasonal. The sauce for this shell pasta dish simply combines garlic, heirloom tomatoes, Mozzarella and basil. 

Prep Time: 12 minutes

Cook Time:15 minutes

Serves: 4-6 entrée portions

1 lb Shells $1.10
1/3 cup olive oil $0.60
3 cloves of garlic, crushed $0.60
3 lb. Heirloom Tomatoes*, diced small with all the juices $3.90
½ lb Buffalo Mozzarella (or goat cheese), cut in small cubes $2.45
1 cup fresh basil, chopped $2.10
Salt and crushed black pepper, to taste $0.06
 Total: $10.81
ESTIMATED FOOD COST FOR 6: $1.80/serving
Chalk Board Menu Price: $7.95
Gross Profit Per Plate: $6.15
Food Cost % (for 6) 22.6%

Estimated Profit -
Your prices may vary slightly.


  1. Heat oil and garlic over medium heat until the garlic is golden brown Add chopped tomatoes and their juice and simmer for 10 minutes.
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions, reserve 1 cup of pasta cooking water. 
  3. Add hot pasta, stir and gradually add the cheese and fresh basil. Season with salt and pepper. If sauce appears dry, slowly add pasta cooking water.
  4. Transfer to a large serving platter and serve immediately

* This sauce is best made when the Heirloom variety of tomatoes are at their peak in mid to late summer. Select them at the Farmer’s Market. Use as many colors as possible- red, yellow, purple and green to make a bright and acidic sauce.