Fresh Tomato Sauce

08/14/2013

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Fresh tomato sauce is one of those things that once you taste it, you’ll never go back to the canned stuff. Moreover, it’s so easy! And it provides something to do with the abundance of tomatoes in your garden! Win win win situation.

Just about any fresh tomatoes I’ve found will do. When I lived in the Midwest, I could grow beautiful Romas that made great sauce since they’re more meaty than watery. Down here in Florida, the humidity hinders large tomato growing (I’m still in denial about this, and plant Romas and Beefsteaks every year only to have them wither and die). However, cherry tomatoes and yellow pears like these grow in abundance. When I pick more than we’ll be able to eat in a couple of days, I wash the extras, cut them in half, and throw them in a quart ziplock bag I keep in the freezer. When I fill that one up, I start another. Frozen tomatoes loose their nice consistency, but they keep their flavor, which makes this recipe great for being able to have a taste of summer anytime of the year.

Ingredients:

9 c chopped fresh tomatoes or 1 quart ziplock bag full of frozen chopped tomatoes
1/8 c olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic
4 28-oz cans whole tomatoes, crushed with juice
1/4 c chopped parsley
1/2 c dry white wine
1 c chicken stock
2 T Herbs of Provence
S&P

Instructions:

Heat olive oil in a big stockpot. Once hot, add the onions and garlic. Sautee until the onion is clear. Add the rest of the ingredients. If you’re adding frozen tomatoes, there is no need to thaw them; just throw them into the pot. Bring to a simmer, and then turn heat to low. Cook on low for four hours while covered. Stir occasionally. After the sauce cools, puree the mixture in a blender.

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As shown here, I fill numerous pint-sized containers and stick them in the freezer. When I want to use it as marinara for bread dipping, pasta sauce, or with lasagna, I just thaw it and add it to our meal. All the work has been done ahead of time, so it’s a quick weekday fix. It also makes a wonderful pizza sauce, although I like to boil the pint amount in a sauce pan to get out some of the water before putting it on the pizza.

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