Tell me some interesting tomato sauce variations.

I'm getting a little tired of the classic Italian sauces and want to try some new tomato sauces :D

  • Posted by: Alex
  • December 5, 2016


Nancy December 11, 2016
Another way to broaden your search. Soups and sauces are closely related - cousins if not siblings - in technique. Many soups are thinned or more liquid versions of sauces.
So if you're looking for new tomato SAUCES consider recipes for SOUPS using tomato as a prime or main ingredient.
Then, make as directed if you like the idea of soup (also can add pasta or serve with bread).
Or make them thicker and use as sauces.
Aisha December 8, 2016
As a few have suggested, tomato really goes with almost anything, and the best way to go is to think of a regional cuisine and take it from there :
- Spanish influenced: tomato, orange, saffron
- North Indian: tomato, ginger, garlic, turmeric +/- garam Masala
- More South Indian influence: tomato, mustard seeds, fenugreek
- Tomato, cilantro, onion was a childhood favorite pasta sauce
- Tomatoes simmered with red and yellow peppers, and a bit of coriander powder is an Algerian favorite
- Tomato, celery, cilantro, carrot, zuchhini forms the basis of a widely eaten Algerian/Morrocan soup (usually with orzo pasta or vermicelli cooked into the soup)
- Southern France: tomato, parsley or tomato and shellfish
- I've used tomato with beetroot to great effect in pasta sauces when I needed to clear out the fridge
- Don't forget the fresh (as opposed to cooked) tomato sauces that are basically like salsas
And the list goes on...
Em December 7, 2016
Vodka sauce is always a crowd stopper. It is in essence tomatoes with heavy cream, garlic, and vodka. Another sauce to check out is peperonata. Tomatoes take a back seat in this one. It is roasted red bell pepper, garlic, and tomatoes.
amysarah December 6, 2016
I'd say Puttanesca and Amatriciana (two of my favorites,) but they're classics, so probably not what you're after.

I make a 'Greek-ish' tomato sauce with ground lamb, onion, garlic, oregano and a touch of cinnamon (sometimes cubes of eggplant sauteed in with the lamb/onion/garlic too.) Served with pasta and crumbled feta on top, instead of parm. Very tasty.
Nancy December 6, 2016
As many have remarked, tomato is a great combiner. In addition, or for emphasis, to the ones already suggested, go by country cuisine and cook what you like with tomatoes:
Congo/Africa - chicken in tomato peanut butter stew
Eastern European Jews/Hungary - various cabbage soups with tomato added
India - various tomato chicken curries
MMH December 5, 2016
One more idea. We make a sort of generic tomato sauce and can or freeze it - just the basics - tomatoes onion, garlic etc. Then, we we need it we add other things. The coolest thing we tried already this year was this - we puréed basic in olive oil and froze it in small portions. Just added it to tomato sauce - oh baby! Also (for another question) squeezed it into a frittata. Just like summer.
QueenSashy December 5, 2016
Try yellow tomatoes instead of red, with a pinch of basil and a dollop of cream.
Ali W. December 5, 2016
Blend it with feta cheese, or a soft goat cheese, it makes the sauce tangy and delicious. I would also add a little bit of mint to that.
Rachel December 5, 2016
i made tomato sauce last night for a base for a variation on chiles rellenos. Onions sauteed in butter or oil (depending on your taste), canned whole tomatoes, pepper, cinnamon, bay leaves, salt, cloves, and garlic. Puree with a stick blender after it has reduced down, and use as sauce for chiles rellenos.
sexyLAMBCHOPx December 5, 2016
I make this tomato base sauce often, Tomato Sauce With Capers and Vinegar, an NYT recipe. Whenever I want a change in flavors, I add piquillo peppers, roasted peppers, pancetta cubes, vinegar, cream, chipotles in adobo, capers, caperberries or anchovies.
C S. December 5, 2016
What do you want to use the tomato sauce for? Are you thinking pasta or going in a different direction?
Alex December 5, 2016
Could be pasta, but doesn't necessarily have to be that, I can appreciate any kinds of tomato sauce :p
MMH December 5, 2016
Mallika's tomato curry sauce is on my list to try. Has anyone made it?
Alex December 5, 2016
Sounds interesting, worth looking into, thank you :)
AntoniaJames December 5, 2016
Yes! I affectionately refer to it as "CheatCode Sauce" because it is, well, the ultimate cheat code.
I make double batches about every 6 - 8 weeks and freeze 1 and 2 cup portions. It's a workhorse in my kitchen. I use it to make chana saag (all components from the freezer - spinach, Basu sauce, chickpeas, heated together for about 10 - 15 minutes, over brown basmati rice, also pre-made from the freezer) for weeknight meals.
I also use it in another weeknight favorite, also "fresh from the freezer" - do you see a trend here? -- Full Details on my "not recipe."
Another great use: mix with coconut milk, pour over salmon fillets, cover with foil, bake 15 - 20 minutes until salmon is cooked. Serve over rice.
I could go on and on . . . . . ;o) P.S. Go to Basu's website for more inspiration.
Smaug December 5, 2016
Huge subject- could (and no doubt has) fill several books. I would suggest, as a generality, that tomato works well with virtually any sort of pepper and any sort of herb. In fact it is one of the great combiners.
Alex December 5, 2016
Makes sense, maybe you have any suggestions on culinary books to start from? :3
Smaug December 5, 2016
I never really went into "ingredient" books, but I sure I've seen them for tomatoes. As far as practical recipes, you'll find them across the board; tomatoes really fit in everywhere. I used to always make a tomato chutney from a Madhur Jaffreys recipe, Mexican cookbooks will have tomato sauces for chiles rellenos, maybe tamales, some types of enchiladas (the standard red enchilada sauce is NOT a tomato sauce), New Orleans books will have shrimp creole and the like, Italian books will have a variety of sauce types- you could go through indexes under "tomato" or "tomato sauce" and strike in every sort of cookbook you have. Or you can improvise- as I said, peppers of all sorts, herbs of all sorts, spices of all sorts. My personal perverse habit- pureed roasted peppers (red bells if nothing better presents itself) in Italian style pasta sauces.
aargersi December 5, 2016
A couple of things come to mind - a Shakshuka type flavor profile - cumin, paprika, cayenne, mint - you could flavor your sauce and serve it with feta instead of parmesan,

I really like the combination of tomato and orange, which would be great with a seafood pasta and freshly chopped parsley.

And of course, being a Texan, I have to suggest a smoky chili flavored sauce (think anchos, chipotles in adobo, etc), maybe made with sausage and served over grits or polenta ....
Alex December 5, 2016
Definitely gonna try some of these, thanks! ^^
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