Since food prepared with garden fresh ingredients tastes the best we will from time to time include our favorite recipes.
In most cases we will call for fresh ingredients but we will also try to give substitutions where we can.
This recipe is for tomato or marinara sauce. We started using this after realizing the caned or jar sauce contained too many things like corn syrup. With a little tinkering this can be altered to fit almost any situation. If it wants to be smooth like pizza sauce put it in the blender. We prefer to make it chunky for pasta and there is no reason this would not work equally well for pizza.
Use fresh tomatoes or canned. If you use fresh you may need to cook it a bit longer depending on the amount of liquid in the tomatoes. Mix up a few different types and colors for interesting flavors and a dramatic presentation.
OK here is what you need. Add or subtract to suite taste. For a larger quantity simply increase the ingredients in an equal ratio.
- 2 cups of diced tomatoes, with about 1/2 cup juice. Substitute 1 large can.
- 1 small can ( 6 oz ) tomato paste. Best to use a brand with no additives or spices.
- 1 large onion.
- 6 cloves garlic
- Fresh basil to taste
- Fresh Greek oregano to taste
- 2 tablespoons good extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- Turbinado sugar to taste ( start with one teaspoon ) Substitute table or brown.
- Optional: Dried or fresh hot red pepper. To taste.
Dice the onion and mince the garlic. Put the onion and olive oil into stainless steel pot and cook on medium flame until the onions begin to turn translucent. Don’t add garlic yet.
Add the tomato paste and continue to cook over medium flame, stirring the paste constantly while it fries for about 1 minutes.
Now add garlic and fry for another minute. Do not burn the garlic. You could also substitute roasted garlic later in the recipe.
Add the tomatoes and stir to combine completely. Reduce the heat to low and let the sauce cook down to thicken for at least 5 minutes or more to desired thickness.
Now add minced herbs, vinegar and sugar, salt and pepper to taste. Adjust the sugar, salt, black pepper and red pepper. Reduce to final thickness.
Unused portions can be kept in the icebox for a week at the most.
Better to freeze it for use later.
To freeze portion try oiling cupcake tins with olive oil on a paper towel or spray oil. Ladle the sauce into the tins and freeze. Now put the frozen tomato pucks into a larger zip lock bag and keep in the freezer.
Options could include bell peppers, meat, wine or whatever.
This really is worth the small effort for a really great marinara sauce.
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