Monday, August 27, 2012

Annual Tomato Sauce Marathon

We've had a lot of requests to post our tomato sauce recipe. It's not so much a recipe as it is a process. And here it is.

Find a nice sized roasting pan and put some oil in the bottom. We have one of those pump containers that we put oil in, pump it up and spray. It coats the bottom nicely, but is not drippy.

Thinly slice a half an onion and scatter it on the bottom of the pan. Then begin the fun process of cutting up your tomatoes - just cut them in half and place them cut side up in the pan. No need to remove the skin or seeds. I like to use a variety of tomatoes. It gives a more complex flavor at the end of your work instead of a one variety sauce which, although is good, is a little one dimensional. I take a handful of garlic, chop them up and scatter on the top of tomatoes once the pan is full. And that's it! Put it in the oven at 375 - 400 and cook for an hour.

After the first hour, your tomatoes will have let go of a lot of their juice. I like to cook that water away to concentrate the flavor. So I take a potato masher and squish all the tomatoes.

It looks like this when the squishing is done. Back into the oven it goes, for another hour or more. I walk by every now and again and open up the oven door to release some of that steam. Be careful and don't burn yourself. Steam burns are not fun (not that I've ever experienced that or anything...).

I think this looks like a watercolor painting

At the end of cooking, you will end up with a pan of thick pulp. Not dry, buy not dripping wet, either. I didn't get a photo of what this looks like - but there is plenty more time to take photos - it's tomato season, isn't it?

Cool the mix in the pan, and when it's cool, spoon all your contents into a plastic bag and freeze. You will have a yummy sauce base to use all year.

We usually thaw this concoction and put it in our food mill to process out the skin and seeds. This is just a personal preference as we think the skin adds a bitterness to our final product, whatever that ends up being. Seeds and skins go into the compost, and the end result - the sauce - is our base for soup, spaghetti or pizza sauce. I don't brag much, but this stuff is awesome.


  1. Thank you for explaining, I think I'm gonna heat up the oven right now....
    Is there a specific reason why you don't foodmill before freezing it? I would like to only once clean the foodmill........

    1. Hmm...... no particular reason. Maybe I'll try that, too!