It’s little & large in the world of our tomatoes this year, as you can tell from the beefy Amish Paste towering over a petite Gardener’s Delight in the picture. The early concerns over blight fortunately came to nothing and we’ve even had some decent ripening weather, so we’ve been harvesting our tomato crop for the last few weeks now.
We grew the Amish Paste for cooking rather than eating – they have a very dense flesh with not very much liquid, so they are ideal for making tomato sauces.
Everybody has their favourite tomato sauce. With fresh tomatoes like these, a quick arrabiata is really good, as is roasting them in the oven with olive oil & herbs, then blending. But this is the recipe that gives us the most useful tomato sauce, a good all-rounder for all kinds of dishes. We freeze it in small batches and prolong the season a bit. The recipe was originally clipped from a magazine, some time in the early 1990s by the looks of it.
We don’t bother peeling the tomatoes as, rather than sieving the sauce, we just whizz it up with a hand blender.
- 2.5kg fresh ripe tomatoes
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 sprig parsley or basil
- 1 whole garlic clove
Really easy this – just pile all the ingredients in a large saucepan & slowly bring to the boil.
Simmer over a very low heat for 2 to 3 hours until the mixture thickens. Stir occasionally, taking care that it doesn’t catch on the pan towards the end.
Either blend the sauce, pass it through a metal sieve, or put it through a mouli.
Use straight away, or freeze in small tubs. The recipe advises freezing for up to one month, but we’ve found it OK at two or three months.