Today I bring you not one but TWO fabulous things: a tip and a recipe to go along with it. It's no secret that summer will be upon us soon, and if you planted your garden when you were supposed to (and didn't drag your feet like I did), then perhaps you will be overrun with fresh tomatoes soon.
That's where the tip comes in. If you're like me, you'll be harvesting more tomatoes than you know what to do with before you know it. Take any that you can't eat right away, wash them, dry them, and put them in a gallon size freezer bag. Store them in your freezer. Continue adding to the bag throughout gardening season. Heck, you might even need to start other bags as the first one fills up. This will ensure that you have fresh tomatoes to use in this recipe and you can have delicious marinara sauce any time of year.
40 ripe tomatoes
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup butter
3 large onions, minced
16 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup dried basil
2 tsp dried oregano
1 cup red wine of choice*
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp salt
2 12 oz cans tomato paste
- If tomatoes have been previously frozen, thaw them, and then place them in a large pot and cook over medium-high heat (covered) for approximately 10-15 minutes or until tender and no longer frozen. If tomatoes have not been previously frozen, quarter them, place them in a large pot and cook them over medium heat (covered) for approximately 5-10 minutes or until tender. (You will not need to add water - the juice from the tomatoes will suffice for cooking purposes.)
- Assemble a food mill over the pot and process tomatoes to remove seeds and skins.
- In a large pan, cook onion and garlic in oil and butter until onion starts to soften, about 5 minutes. Combine mixture with tomatoes.
- Stir in basil, oregano, wine, sugar, and salt, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 2 hours.
- Stir in tomato paste and simmer an additional 2 hours.
Since this recipe only calls for 1 cup of wine, you should really make sure that what you're using is quality stuff. I recommend at least a few quality control checks before actually using any in your pasta sauce. After all, you wouldn't want to use ANY ingredient that you haven't personally given the seal of approval, would you? ;-)