Oh my my! It surely is fresh tomato time here, as it is in many parts of the country, I’m sure! So what do you do with all of your tomatoes?
First thing that we do on our acreage is make salsa . . . lol!
You thought that I was going to say Italian tomato sauce, huh?
Actually, we really do prepare and can our salsa first and then make the marinara sauce. Making salsa is such a day-long affair, that I prefer to just get it out of the way and then return to preparing dishes that aren’t quite so long and involved! But I’ll post that recipe later for you.
Here’s a nice basic marinara sauce that you can find in many Italian cookbooks, it’s nothing unique to credit me for. I’m sure that there is a plethora of recipes on the web as well. But we think the aroma of this blend of ingredients is sublime and divine.
If you don’t have freshly ripe red tomatoes, check and see if you have a local farmers market, or some really good varieties at your grocery store, and then of course you can always beg for some from a friend who has fresh tomatoes (we get that quite a lot and end of giving half of ours away every summer). Remember the summer when tomatoes were going for $3.00 each and some restaurants stopped serving them? We had neighbors that we didn’t even know asking for our tomatoes!
But I ramble on (as usual). Here’s the recipe for you!
Garden Fresh Marinara Sauce
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- 2 - 3 pounds fresh ripe, red tomatoes (Roma's and any other variety you like)
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 4 - 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 1 stalk celery with leaves, diced
- 1/2 a carrot, diced
- 1/2 bunch Italian parsley, diced
- 1 tsp. Sea Salt
- 30 basil leaves, minced
- Fill a large, deep pot full of water and bring to a boil.
- Place the tomatoes in and cook them until the outer layers of skin/peel begins to crack.
- In the meantime, in a large fry pan, saute the garlic, onion, celery, and carrots in the olive oil for only a few minutes. Remove from heat.
- Remove the tomatoes from the boiling water as soon as the cracks appear.
- Allow to cool.
- When cool, remove the peel/skin with your hands and remove the green stem area.
- In the fry pan with the sauteed ingredients, squeeze the tomatoes through your fingers into the fry pan to sort of 'mush them up'.
- Add salt.
- Cook the sauce mixture for about 20 minutes or until your desired level of doneness.
- Add chopped basil and parsley.
- Taste. Taste. Taste.
- Serve over any pasta or in any dish that requires a tomato sauce.
- Freeze in plastic (sorry not glass) containers.
- Or can the sauce per safety instructions for canning/preserving food.
La Bella Vita Cucina http://www.italianbellavita.com/
In a large, very deep pot of boiling water, place the tomatoes in until the outer layer of skin/peel cracks.
A close-up of how the tomato skin cracks from the heat of the water.
Remove tomatoes from the pot as soon as this takes place and allow to cool.
No need to run under cold water unless you want to,
because you’re going to continue to cook the tomatoes anyway.
But wait until the tomatoes are cool enough to handle with your hands
so that you can remove the skin/peel as well as the green stem area.
In a large fry pan, saute’ the garlic, onion, celery, and carrots in the olive oil for only a few minutes, not more than that.
Add the chopped basil and Italian parsley to the cooked sauce (below).
Allow the sauce to cook for another 30 minutes or so until your desired level of consistency is achieved.
And don’t forget to add more salt and seasonings if you believe they are needed.
So wa la! The finished sauce is ready to be eaten, frozen, or canned.
It’s really quite that simple to make!
So go get those fresh ‘maters and make some home-made goodness
that you can open up in the middle of winter and just dream of warm summer days!