Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Add in pasta and cook per packaged directions. If using fresh pasta, the cooking time will be much shorter.
Heat large sauté pan over medium heat. When pan is hot, add in butter or olive oil. I like to use a combination of both. Once butter/oil is hot, but not smoking, add in fennel to caramelize.
Allow fennel to caramelize for 3-5 minutes before adding in the sliced garlic, tomatoes, and sprigs of thyme. Stir to coat the veggies with the fat in the pan. If too dry, add additional olive oil or butter.
When fennel is tender and caramelized, and tomatoes are bursting open and also caramelized, turn heat to low. Season with salt and pepper.
Using a slotted spoon or pasta scooper, lift pasta from pot and put into sauté pan with veggies. Stir to combine over the low heat. If pasta seems dry, add some of the pasta water from the pot.
Once combined, remove from heat. Stir in basil leaves and a small pour of olive oil if needed for flavor. Sprinkle with toasted pine nuts.
Season pasta with additional salt and pepper, if needed. Enjoy!