Thursday, June 28, 2012

Simple Farm-to-table Tomato Sauce

This whole eat-healthy-or-bust adventure I've taken our family on has been fun so far. We have been swimming in a bountiful sea of beautiful, local fruits and veggies this summer thanks to our CSA share. But inevitably, winter will come and I will long for the taste of a homegrown tomato and the closest one will be in Florida. Or California. Or Mexico. So I am trying to stretch my cooking comforts by freezing and jarring for the coming winter months. I posted a picture on Instagram of the homegrown tomatoes I made into pasta sauce and lots of people asked for my recipe. So here it is. I suggest at least doubling or tripling this recipe to make a batch large enough to freeze some. Just fill your oven with fresh tomatoes!
This week's haul from our CSA share
 A vision of organic fabulousness!!

6-8 large tomatoes, quartered 
2 green onions, chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic, peeled and halved
2 TBSP olive oil
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup fresh whole basil leaves
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

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1. Preheat oven to 350º . In a glass casserole dish spread tomatoes, onions and garlic in a single layer. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 
2. Roast tomatoes at 350º for 1 hour, stirring ocassionaly. 
3. Add whole basil leaves and roast for an additional 45 minutes- 1 hour. (Tomatoes should be very soft and you should still have some juice in the dish.)
4. Remove from oven and add mixture to a blender or food processor. Process minimally to retain some texture to your sauce. Let mixture cool and add to gallon-size freezer bags. Label with date and lay flat on a plate to freeze. Once frozen you can stand up in the freezer and store with other sauces. 
5. To thaw put bag in the fridge (on a plate or dish in case the bag ripped at any point!) for 24 hours then heat in a sauce pan. 

This is a basic sauce. I like to add more veggies and meat. The other day I sauteed italian sausage with peppers, onions and diced eggplant then added my sauce. I also like to finish with some fresh basil, because I have a slight basil addiction which I haven't sought help for yet. It was a very hearty sauce and great over any pasta. Experiment and make it your own!

This was served over some delicious Rio Bertolini mushroom stuffed ravioli

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