Roast tomato sauce

Its fast and faster still if made with home bottled roast tomatoes

its easy, its intense

it covers all tomato sauce bases.

Simmer meatballs in it, layer a dish of melanzane parmigiana, serve plain with home made pasta and freshly grated parmesan, pour over fried eggs, dribble across sausages and green lentils, make your best pizza ever and so on and so on. You cant have enough good tomato sauce on hand in the kitchen. There are as many different types of tomato sauce as there are cooks so here is my “go to” sauce that is fool proof when you are confronted with less than inspiring fruit and stunning when made with summery  full flavour specimens.

If you want a smooth sauce (personally a bit prissy I think and smacks of baby food) then either peel and seed your tomatoes first or pass the mixture through a “mouli” (food mill). For everyday home cooking there really is no need and besides the seeds and skin is where a lot of the goodness lies.

Ingredients

4 cloves garlic

1 onion

1 kg of tomatoes or a jar of the home bottled tomatoes

Some alcohol such as left over red wine (in the rare case this might occur) or better martini, approx 300ml

1 lemon with the skin peeled in strips, juice of the lemon

Some Worcestershire sauce (optional but I like it)

How To

Cut the tomatoes in half horizontally. Oil a baking sheet that you have covered with aluminium foil (reduce washing up).  Don’t bother to skin the onion or garlic. Throw the garlic, tomatoes and onion on the sheet and roast in the oven for approximately 1 hour – until the tomatoes look well cooked and start to caramelize a bit. You want the little brown caramelly bits.

If you have bottled these beauties…you just fast forward all the way here..and fry some onions and garlic in a sauce pan and add your tomatoes from the jar (do discard the rosemary as it will be bitter but the thyme is fine)

At this stage the seasoning is up to you and the final dish you are using the sauce for. I sometimes add thyme, oregano or Worcestershire sauce depending on the dish and lets be honest depending on what is in the kitchen.  Let the mixture boil and then cook on a low low heat for at least 20 minutes. The sauce deepens in flavour if you can leave it an hour. Take out the bay leaves and lemon peel. Bitter blitzed up bay leaves are really disgusting. You have been warned! Blitz it all up with your blender of choice (I use the stick blender) and you are set to go.

Variations: add the onion raw at the end when you blitz for a sauce with a bit of kick  “gazpacho style”. The onion is blitzed in raw and gives not only great flavor but the maximum power of the almighty onion! Both onions and garlic are cholesterol busters so don’t be shy. Onions are high in vitamin C, B6, biotin, chromium, calcium and dietary fiber and also contain good amounts of folic acid and vitamin B1 and K.

 

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