While something like bow pasta – macaroni of some type, not too large – is boiling:
Destem wild rocket. Yes it does matter and it is worth it, even if it’s for guests, not just you. Destemming rocket is the difference between happiness and some place you don’t want to be. Chop.
Grate parmesan – shaved would do instead for something a bit different.
Chop a shallot or so.
This is the tricky part: you need some GOOD tomatoes. Please don’t buy those truss tomatoes, they are absolutely hopeless. This time of year I do crazy things out of tomato-deprivation, but take my word for it, truss tomatoes are not to be trusted. In winter I’ve only come across one tomato I’m really happy with: Tom Cooper’s smoked tomatoes. You can get them here and there around Melbourne if you look hard enough. They are NOT great tomatoes, but he is actually able to turn an indifferent tomato into something worth eating. Bravo Tom Cooper.
The other solution is – wait. Wait until summer and then make this dish.
So, we have: chopped shallot, destemmed chopped wild rocket, parmesan, relatively finely diced tomatoes (let’s face it, you are probably going to go right out and buy whatever is handy, well, just remember you are not tasting this dish as it should be!!). You have mixed these with best olive oil. Drain the pasta, toss thoroughly with the rest of the ingredients. Serve.
Be warned. This dish rests on the quality of the ingredients.
PS: did I need to mention lashings of freshly ground pepper? Oh, and I might even add salt to this one.