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How do you make a tomato based pasta sauce?

Note that I do not like canned tomato sauce. I think it's the strong concentrated tomato paste and the oregano inside it that makes me strongly dislike it, so a tomato based sauce that doesn't have that taste would be great. Also the simpler the better because I'm and idiot when it comes to cooking.

asked by Nicolas over 2 years ago

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11 answers 1371 views
My Friend Maillard
added over 2 years ago

When it isn't tomato season I like to make tomato sauce with cherry/grape tomatoes because they are usually the highest quality/most consistent hothouse variety available near me. I know some people have a problem with the little bits of skin this results in (but the skin is where most of the fiber and glutamates are). If you prefer skinless, I also like the Pomi brand boxed tomatoes.

I usually follow the same basic process as YGC above, using onions or shallots instead of garlic sometimes. Dried oregano and/or fresh rosemary add a deeper flavor than basil, you can also add a splash of wine, pinch of sugar, paprika, balsamic vinegar, etc. Practice the basic recipe then figure out which aromatics and add-ins you prefer.

(Also, sometimes, if I have extra time I bake my sauce. It concentrates the flavor in a sweeter way without sugar and needs less cleaning-up afterwards. htpp://www.myfriendmaillard.com)

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Smaug
added over 2 years ago

If you want to make sauce with cherry tomatoes, which I wouldn't really recommend, the skins are easily removed with a food mill.

pierino
pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added over 2 years ago

Oreta di Vita, who is to Roman cooking what Marcela Hazan was to Venetian, use cherry tomatoes (pomodorini) with the skin on. Unless you're fussy about the skin they are best when they are barely cooked. Di Vita wants you to taste tomato. In one of her recipes the cherry tomatoes are halved, salted and tossed with basil and left to marinade for an hour. Hot pasta is then added. They are also good with small clams.

sexyLAMBCHOPx
sexyLAMBCHOPx

Chops is a trusted home cook.

added over 2 years ago

If you're looking for a basic red sauce (marinara) this recipe is a good one: http://cooking.nytimes...

Once you've made it it's easy to adapt to suit your tastes and freezes very well.

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AntoniaJames
AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added over 2 years ago

I use Cento San Marzano tomatoes in the "Genius" Ina Garten roasted tomato vodka sauce and in the "Genius" Marcella Hazan tomato + onion + butter sauce, both here on Food52. In fact, I make double batches and stock my freezer with both, replenishing *before* the last container is used. They are that good. First rate, highly recommended.
Incidentally, I find the Cento tomatoes far superior for making sauce than virtually all of the fresh tomatoes we get in Northern CA. Just saying . . . . ;o)

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Smaug
added over 2 years ago

You pretty much have to grow your own (or know someone who does) to get a good tomato anymore- the stores are hopeless, and even at the farmer's market they are generally picked pretty green.