Simple Fresh Tomato Sauce
When local fresh, ripe plum tomatoes are piled high at the market, this is a good sauce to make in bigger batches and freeze for future use in many different dishes. If you pass the cooked tomatoes through a food mill, you do not need to peel and seed them.
2 kg (4 lbs) ripe plum (Roma) tomatoes
125 ml (½ cup) extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher or sea salt
Peel, seed and dice tomatoes (see below).
In a large heavy saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add diced tomatoes with their juices and a large pinch of salt. Simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally until tomatoes are soft, 15 to 20 minutes.
Pass through a food mill or purée in a food processor in batches, if you like a smooth sauce.
Scoop the sauce into freezer bags in two cup portions. Lay the filled and sealed bags flat on a baking sheet, label and place in the freezer. When the sauce is frozen, the flat pouches may be stacked to take up less space.
Makes about 1 L (4 cups)
Heirloom Tomato Sauce
Heirloom tomatoes come in a range of colours. White, orange and yellowish varieties are mild in flavour with hints of citrus. Purple, dark red and dark green tomatoes have rich, more intense flavour. Try different combinations to discover your favourites and to suit how you plan to use the sauce. Let the essential tomato flavour shine. Serve over pasta for a delicious starter or side dish.
Cut 4 large tomatoes in half horizontally. Squeeze each half gently and use your fingers to poke out the seeds. Cut away any core at the stem end and chop coarsely.
In a heavy saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add chopped tomatoes with any juices and a half teaspoon (2 ml) kosher or sea salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes are softened, 10-15 minutes.
Remove from heat. If you prefer a smooth sauce, purée tomatoes in a food processor, or pass through a food mill. Stir in 2 tablespoons (30 ml) finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, basil, marjoram or oregano.
Makes 11/2 cups (375 ml)