Roasted Tomato Sauce (GF, V)
This fabulous tomato sauce, shared with me by my dear friend Katherine, doesn’t have to simmer for hours. In fact, it doesn’t even need to simmer. Simply oven roasting tomatoes for half an hour adds a light, smoky sultry taste you can’t buy in a jar.
Yield: 3 cups (750 mL)
8 large, ripe beefsteak tomatoes, or 15 plum tomatoes, cut in half
2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
8 whole garlic cloves, peeled
¼ cup (60 mL) extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon (15 mL) dried basil
1 tablespoon (15 mL) dried oregano
2½ teaspoons (12.5 mL) salt
½ teaspoon (2.5 mL) freshly ground pepper
½ teaspoon (2.5 mL) crushed red pepper flakes
2 cups (50 mL) coarsely chopped basil, divided
Place oven racks at the top and bottom thirds of the oven. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Put the tomatoes, onions, and garlic cloves in a large bowl and mix gently. Drizzle with the olive oil and sprinkle with the dried basil, dried oregano, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Toss to coat evenly.
Spread the mixture on 2 large rimmed baking sheets and place them in the oven, uncovered, on the arranged top and bottom racks. Roast for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes are very soft. Switch the positions of the baking sheets from the top to the bottom racks
halfway through roasting. When done, remove from the oven.
Scrape the mixture from one sheet into a food processor and whirl until no large chunks remain, and then add 1 cup (250 mL) of the chopped basil and whirl until the mixture is puréed to your liking. Transfer the contents of the processor to a large bowl and repeat with second baking sheet of roasted tomatoes.
Serve the sauce over pasta or spaghetti squash. It will keep well, covered and refrigerated, for 3 days. It also freezes well.
To reheat, if frozen, thaw and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until hot, about 5 minutes.
To make this sauce even more luscious, add ½ cup (125 mL) of whipping cream and ⅓ cup (80 mL) of vodka