A Curious About Cuisine Guest in the Kitchen
Simple and Delicious Tomato Sauce – written by Lynn Kearcher
I have tried several recipes for tomato sauce, from the Old Italian school of cooking for two days to the nouveau style of blanching and skinning the tomatoes and sautéing with oil and herbs. The long slow cooking, my mother’s method, I think was just a way for women to be able to stay in the kitchen, sip some Chianti,and occasionally yell out to the family “I can’t do that now…I’m making the sauce.”
Truth is that cooking for hours does not transform beautifully ripe plum tomatoes into the perfect sauce. After years of making sauce and putting it up for the winter this is what I have found.
Recipe: Cut 3 pounds of plum tomatoes into chunks. Drizzle over the top with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt. (After trying a handful of exotic salts…I stumbled upon Trapani, from a fishing village in Sicily…not as expensive as Himalayan pink salt and it is the perfect texture, breaks down beautifully in cooking.)
Chop fine a handful of basil leaves, and sprinkle with about 12 red pepper flakes. Toss. Then roast the tomatoes @ 375 for about 30 minutes stirring a couple of times.
After roasting, let tomatoes cool.
Meanwhile chop one medium size yellow onion and 6 cloves of garlic and sauté until translucent in olive oil on medium heat. Put the tomatoes through a sieve, which will remove skins and add milled tomatoes to the onion mixture. (If you like your sauce chunky, mill 1/2 of the tomatoes and leave the others.)
Peel a generous swath of orange from a firm orange and twist the skin above sauce, adding the orange skin to the pot. (Twist releases the orange oils). Add 1/4 cup of Chianti or if you rather a sweeter taste add 1/4 cup Marsala.
Cook for about 30 minutes.
Adjust sauce before putting on pasta by adding a chiffionade of basil, grinds of black pepper. I sometimes like to toss my hot pasta in a bit of butter and add a squeeze of garlic before adding the sauce.
– Lynn Kearcher was raised to love restaurants. Her father began The Woodland restaurant in Lakeville Connecticut, a still well-known haunt for those looking for a wonderful meal.
At eighteen years of age, she traveled by train to New York to take cooking classes with James Beard. While living in New York she was a lifestyle editor for GQ magazine and Penthouse magazine
writing articles of food and wine. Her most memorable food experience was traveling to Scotland to write a piece on single malt scotches….before they became a rage in this country.
Raised by parents who believed “nothing should be white” her family ate
brown rice, brown bread, always a big salad at night and a family garden
which for some reason produced the most glorious tomatoes.