Monday, May 14, 2012

Roasted Tomato Pasta Sauce

So good!
(from Cook's Illustrated)

2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons extra virgin Olive Oil (divided)
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 lbs vine ripened tomatoes (about 8 medium)
6 medium garlic cloves (peeled)
1 medium onion (peeled and cut into 1/2 inch rounds)
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1-2 teaspoons sugar (as needed)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil.
Salt and pepper

A rimmed baking sheet
A rack that fits in the baking sheet
Food processor

1) Cut the tomatoes pole to pole, and using a spoon removed the core and the seeds.

2) Adjust the oven rack to the middle position and preheat to 475F

3) In a large bowl combine the tomato paste, 1 tablespoon of the oil, thyme, red pepper flakes, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

4) Toss the tomatoes, garlic and onion into the paste mixture until everything is well coated.

5) Line the baking sheet with foil and then place the rack on top of it. Place a 4" square of foil in the middle of the rack and put the onions and garlic on it. Place the tomatoes, cut side down around the outside.

6) Place in the oven and roast until the vegetables are soft and the tomatoes are well charred, 45 to 55 minutes (Mine were actually done after 35 minutes - so watch carefully)

7) Put the garlic and onion into a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.

8) Add the tomatoes, vinegar and remaining tablespoon of oil. Pulse until broken down but still slightly lumpy. 

9) Scrape down the bowl and season with salt, pepper and sugar to taste.

10) Stir in the basil.

The recipe makes enough sauce for 1lb of penne or ziti pasta.

It tastes great as it is. I have also made the sauce in advance and added to it some bell peppers and chicken that I have sauteed. Mushrooms would be great too (there again I add mushrooms to almost everything!)

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