I love the taste of pasta tossed with fresh tomato sauce. It’s one of those guilty pleasures in life worth the time and effort. Even though it’s not exactly fresh tomato season, you may want to save this article for a day this summer when you are wondering what to do with that bushel of ripening tomatoes. The beauty of tomato sauce is you can use bruised and even slightly over ripened tomatoes.
If you use several varieties of tomatoes your sauce will have a richer flavor. Another way to add flavor depth is to roast some or all of your tomatoes first. I sometimes opt to roast cherry tomatoes before adding them. They take far less time to roast.
One question I get asked a lot is whether I go to the trouble of peeling all the tomatoes before I cook with them. The answer is no. That’s because I use a food mill which removes all the peelings for me!
10-15 pounds fresh tomatoes
crushed red pepper (optional)
sugar (optional, helps cut the acid)
Chop tomatoes into large chunks and add to large stock pot.
Cook down on medium heat for 45-60 minutes. This time will vary depending upon how much water is in your tomatoes and how thick you like your sauce.
In batches, run cooked tomatoes through a food mill to remove all skins and seeds.
Add seasoning (whatever you prefer) and simmer 10-15 minutes longer.
Cook pasta in salted water to desired doneness. I prefer some bite to my pasta.
Toss hot pasta with sauce. Taste and season as needed. Top with freshly grated parmesan cheese and serve immediately.
Less is more when it comes to fresh tomato sauce. But that’s just my opinion! If you’ve never used a food mill, they work great for sauces and soups. And, if you are ambidextrous, it counts as an arm workout too!
What’s your favorite way to prepare tomato sauce?