Sunday, November 27, 2011

Speedy Roasted Tomato Sauce!

I think I've managed to create my own 'signature' tomato sauce- a recipe that I'll come back to every year. I came up with this recipe/method by accident, after trying to find a speedy way to make a thick, roasted tomato sauce after a long day of work, while juggling kids, dog, and getting dinner on the table.   I have to record this method somewhere so I won't forget next year. Thought I'd share it on the blog so I`ll remember where I put it!

This sauce is a compilation of different recipes and techniques I have read about on the web and from cookbooks- inspired and adapted by trial and error.  I can`t really say this is an original recipe, certainly there are probably lots of similar ones out there.  I had one eureka moment though, when I was following a sauce recipe that had lots of ingredients in addition to the regular tomato, garlic and onion combo (had carrots, celery, red wine, balsamic, etc,etc).  After a short roasting time in the oven, the sauce was to be on low for the day in a crockpot to thicken.  I thought that a crockpot was perfect to use while I was at work.  The resulting sauce was good, but the next time I made it, I eliminated most of the extra ingredients out of sheer laziness.  When I tasted the more simplified batch and discovered that after minimal roasting time, it was already thick enough, I knew that this was it!

Not counting prep time to wash and cut up the tomatoes, it takes only 40 minutes in the oven from start to finish, and I end up with a perfectly thick and tasty sauce.  That beats the previous processing method I was using that required long slow roasting time, either in the oven or simmering on the stove.

I have no set measurements of ingredients.  My tools were a baking sheet lined with parchment and my trusty tomato sauce maker/strainer/crusher (? not sure what it`s called). 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Wash and prep tomatoes (I used what ever was ripe from the garden- san marzano romas, black plum,  Cosmonaut Volkov, Ernies Plump, cherries) Note: the picture below was a small batch (probably the last of the tomatoes for the year).

Cut up larger tomatoes into more manageable pieces. 

Peel and quarter 1 large red or yellow onion

Peel and throw in 1-3 cloves of garlic (after experimentation, my preference was for 2 large cloves)

Drizzle olive oil over the mix.

Drizzle a splash or two of Balsamic Vinegar.

Top with fresh ground pepper.

Mix it around and stick it in the oven.

Roast 20 min. Stir, roast another 20.  (Sometimes I had to stir more often, depending on the size of the tomatoes to make sure they didn't burn).

After cooling, dump the whole resulting mush into the strainer, start cranking away, and voila: yummy sauce.  At this point I would add in additional herbs; basil, was my favourite.  I find the splash of balsamic gives the sauce some 'depth' (Clearly, I've been watching far too much food tv!)

I usually freeze the sauce in ice cube trays, then pop the cubes into a ziploc for storage- easy to take out small or large batches depending on my cooking needs.  The strainer does a nice job of removing all the skins.  These skins were not put to waste!  I froze them all and have been using them to make vegetable stock.  

1 comment:

Gardeningbren said...

Oh dear...I would be so tempted to eat it right out of the roasting pan ;-)