Monday, August 25, 2008

Elizabeth's Roasted Tomato Sauce

Recipe "Author":

Elizabeth of Elizabeth's Flowers. She is such an inspiration in her creative use of materials as well as her testimony. She also has a website for her pressed flower cards and art, using recycled paper (she recycles it herself), and an Etsy shop!

Original Recipe: roasted tomato sauce
15 cloves of peeled garlic
8 # of ripe tomatoes (any kind)
5 medium onions, quartered
1 cup of fresh herbs, chopped (I use a mixture of oregano, Italian flat leaf parsley, basil, thyme, and rosemary)
1/4 cup of olive oil
1/2 teaspoon of salt
freshly ground black pepper (I like a lot)
2-4 tablespoons of honey, optional

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Chop 5 of the cloves of garlic. Leave the remaining cloves whole. Cut each tomato in half. In a large roasting pan, carefully toss together the tomatoes, garlic, onions, herbs, oil, salt, and pepper.

2. Roast for 25 minutes. Gently stir. Roast for another 25 minutes, stir again. Roast another 45 minutes, or until tomatoes are softened and broken down into a sauce with a golden brown crust on top.
3. Remove from oven and taste for seasoning. Mash tomatoes slightly, (some chunks are nice) or blend until smooth if you wish. This sauce freezes well, or is great for canning. Use it with pasta, fish, or as a wonderful dipping sauce for really good french bread.

My alterations:
~No onions ('cuz I know my hubby's tummy won't appreciate them)
~1/4 cup dried herbs ('cuz I don't have my own fresh and WON'T pay out the you-know-what for them!)
~No salt or pepper. When I got married, I stopped using salt in most of my recipes because my hubby and I have VERY different tastes when it comes to salt, so we add it after if necessary.
~And I forgot the honey.
~I happened to have a few Sweet Banana Peppers from my mom's garden, so I sliced two up to add to the sauce. I kept the seeds, but discard those if you don't like the heat.
***AND be sure to wash your hands very well after handling peppers! If you happen to wipe your eyes before you wash up, you'll be sorry!
~Because it was late, once I took the sauce out of the oven, I removed the sauce from the roasting pan and put it in a dutch oven of sorts with an ice bath in the bottom half. (Two pans, the bottom one slightly larger having the ice water bath to cool the sauce a bit faster.)
~Then I took my immersion blender (long wand-looking blender used often for drinks, etc.) and blended it all together so it has some chunks but not too many. I also took out some of the skins, but not all.

The results:

My house smells SO good! I tasted a little and it was fantastic, I can't wait to have a whole meal of it!
I was a little surprised at how little sauce I got out of it though. I haven't measured it, but probably 3-4 cups of sauce from 8+ lbs of tomatoes. That may be normal, I don't know. (Never made my own sauce from fresh tomatoes before!)

The real test: (Will I make it again?)
Guaranteed YES!
(I'll probably double batch it to make it worth jacking my stove up to 450 for an hour and a half on a hot summer night though!)

***An idea - using a good oven thermometer, I could try this in a pan on the grill. Hmmm...something to consider!

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

I love your pictures MJ! I'm glad you enjoyed making the recipe - it does smell really good while it's cooking, doesn't it?

You're right, it doesn't make as much as you would think it would, but I find that I use much less of this sauce than I would store bought tomato sauce, (especially on pasta) because it is so flavorful.

Thanks for your links to my sites. Happy Cooking!