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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Easy But Delicious Tomato Sauce

Back in my residency days I ate alot of pasta. I remember one friend of mine always saying that she would never buy a jar of tomato sauce as it never tasted as good as making it from scratch. I didn't really catch on to this until this past year when I began making sauce from fresh tomatoes in season. There is truly no comparison and it's not all that hard to make. Here's a basic recipe. Once you get the basic sauce down, you can add vegetables, herbs, capers, olives, really whatever you like.

3 pounds fresh tomatoes(preferably in season)
1 clove garlic minced
1 medium yellow or white onion diced
2 tbsp pure olive oil
1 carrot diced
1 celery stalk diced
red pepper flakes 1/4 tsp
1/2 cup water
kosher salt

First the tomatoes need to be peeled and seeded. You can always start with 16 oz. of canned diced or crushed tomatoes if they are not in season, but if you have the fresh ones, here's what you do: drop each tomato in boiling water for 1 minute, then remove and place in cold water, the skin will now easily come off. Next remove all the seeds from the tomato. This is a messy job but makes the sauce much sweeter.

Place olive oil in large saucepan and heat med high. Drop in the onions and sautee for 5 minutes until translucent, then add carrot and celery for a minute. Next add the tomatoes and 1/2 cup of water and red pepper flakes. Simmer medium low for 45 minutes. That's it. I like to use a hand blender and make the sauce smooth at this point but you can keep it chunky as well. Season with salt as needed. Keeps for about a week in the fridge or you can freeze it in small containers and use as needed.

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