Thursday, September 17, 2009

Red Sauce or "The Garden" part III

Like it does every year fall comes around the nights get cooler and longer, the lawn needs to be raked more and mowed less and the coolest thing; anything that you planted in the garden is ready to be harvested, cooked and eaten! My garden experience this year was, for lack of better word "cute" apart from the upside down tomato plant I harvested about 1/2 cup of fresh basil and a 5 inch tall Oregano plant. Then there are the four Pumpkin plants that managed to strangle everything within ten feet of my postage stamp sized garden before producing a baseball sized pumpkin that died and fell off the vine a month ago.

With the last of my tomatoes and the fresh basil and oregano I had the makings for tomato sauce. If you are following this blog I promised my youngest daughter (she is 7) to make it when I bought the tomato plant and upside down planter in the spring. I had a few other successes with this tomato plant so it was time to pay the piper so to speak. So I picked the last of my Roma Tomatoes, clipped the Basil plant to the roots and pulled 4 branches of the Oregano to pull the leaves off. This is the most basic Marinara Sauce recipe you will need:

3TBS Olive Oil
3 cloves of fresh Garlic minced
1 small Onion
1 1/2 Pounds of Fresh Tomatoes (I supplemented mine with some from the store)
2 tsp Fresh Basil Chopped
2 tsp Fresh Oregano chopped
a pinch more dry Basil (I didn't think I had quite enough)
I /2 C red wine
sugar salt and pepper to taste
Begin by peeling the tomatoes the easiest way to do that is to put them into boiling water for about 30 seconds, pull them out and put them in a dish to cool a little then peel them with a paring knife it should come off without any resistance, cut the tomatoes in half and get the seeds out. I just grab what I can get with the tip of a knife and throw them away, the seeds are kind of bitter so I try to get most of them out, I can't get them all but I take what I can. Once the tomatoes are peeled and seeded set them in a bowl by the stove. You may want to cut them into smaller pieces now or wait a bit, you can decide any time.

Now we get to cook! put the Olive Oil in a Saute pan and put in the Onions and Garlic once they are translucent put in the Tomatoes followed by the rest of the ingredients... except for the salt pepper and sugar. Let these ingredients cook for about an hour in a stainless steel pan (aluminum pans tend to get a little weird when you cook tomatoes in them). When that time is up add the last ingredients Salt, Pepper and Sugar. You have to add a little at a time and decide when you have enough. My tomatoes were a little on the sweet side so I ended up with about 3/4 tsp of sugar. Start with just a little bit and add, remember that it is impossible to take it out. As for salt and pepper, you know what you like and can add it at the table so do what you know is appropriate.

Now you have a choice, for true Marinara sauce you might want to take your kitchen scissors and cut up any unwieldy chunks of tomato into bite sized pieces as you get close to the end of cooking. Since I am the only person in my house that likes chunky marinara sauce I put this into the blender and chopped it up pretty good. The Sauce will taste as good but the texture is a little different.

No comments:

Post a Comment