I was going to start this post with “let me tell you a story” but in reality, now that I think about it, it isn’t actually a story, it is a fact. And the fact is this : my sister doesn’t like anything that is based on/in a tomato sauce.
As with all things, there are exceptions and in this particular case there are three – spaghetti bolognese, lasagna and pizza. But, the tomato sauce in the bolognese and lasagna must, must, contain chopped tomatoes and a tin of tomato soup. It can not be watery in any way shape or form.
So imagine her delight one evening when I told her we were having spaghetti and meatballs for dinner. In tomato sauce. Her face said it all.
With this tomato sauce, oh miracles of miracles, I managed to persuade her that not all tomato sauces are a food stuff of the devil. Some tomato sauces can, and will, actually taste of tomatoes.
And, knock me down with a feather, the eternal carnivore even declared that she would happily eat a bowl of this tomato sauce and pasta without the meatballs. Without the meatballs! No meat! A very rare occurrence I can assure you.
The secret is this:
Tomatoes! What a revelation.
Specifically baby tomatoes, because they are so much sweeter than their larger siblings, and that makes all the difference.
I first made this sauce last summer when the tomato plants in the garden went ipso-nutso and we were drowning in tomatoes. Something had to be done. At this time of year you will find me snacking on baby tomatoes all the time. I eat them like grapes. But there are times when you simply can not eat enough to keep on top of the ever-increasing supply, so it is very useful to have a tasty, easy and simple tomato sauce recipe up your sleeve.
Of course you can make this sauce in the colder months too, baby tomatoes are available all year round in the supermarkets, but in-season, ideally home-grown ones will make the sauce all that more special. And there is no restrictions on what variety you use – cherry, baby plum, red, orange, yellow, purple, slightly green; I throw them all in.
I’ve shown it here simply stirred into to some pasta, but it is very versatile. If you are aching for some herby green-ness then I would suggest flat leaf parsley or a little bit of thyme. With a green salad on the side, it makes a great simple supper.
Easy & Simple Tomato Sauce
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 shallot, finely diced
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 500g baby tomatoes, halved
- 1 tbsp tomato puree
- 1 tsp sugar
- salt and pepper
- Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the oil and butter.
- When the butter starts to bubble add the shallot and garlic and cook until soft.
- Add the tomatoes and cook for 5 – 10 minutes, until the tomatoes have broken down and released all their juice.
- Add the tomato puree and sugar and mix well. If the sauce is a little dry for your liking add a splash or two of water.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.
© The Pink Rose Bakery 2015