Just a few simple ingredients: olive oil, onion, garlic, quality tomato paste and tomatoes make up this healthy and very f...
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I was SO intrigued when I read about the tomato sauce. I searched out the San Marzano tomatoes and found them at a great price and even found a passoatto (sp), so am set to go!! If this is half as good as described, and makes 3.5 liters it is well worth any expense. I will be making a batch to share with family and will let you know how it turns out, but based on previous Rouxbe experiences, it should be a winner. Another culinary adventure moves out of the starting gate. Thanks for the inspiration. Great writing.
I used it for everything, from breakfast, stews to curries. One of my all time favourite breakfast is poached 2 eggs on the tomato sauce and top it with Gruyere or Emmenthal cheese. Once the eggs are done to your liking, lay on the cheese, turn off the fire, cover until the cheese melts. Goes well with any savoury bread from Terra Breads. Yummm!
Important to first blanch the tomatoes in boiling water for about 30 seconds to a minute so the skins easily come off before deseeding. If the skins are left on, the sauce will be chunky and feel slimy (that's due to the skins in the sauce). In other words, you need to do what the growers do before they put the tomatoes in the can, which is exactly what is blanch and skin.
Here is a Drill-down showing you just how to Peel Tomatoes
Careful when adding wine, as a bad wine, and too much of it, can actually make the sauce more bitter. But if adding a good wine, do it in the beginning, after the paste, before the actual tomato puree...and evaporate as much of the alcohol as possible..this enhances sweetness in the wine. Personally, I prefer to keep my sauce neutral and add wine to the pan when making the specific sauce for my dish, such as deglazing the sauteed mushrooms, or sausage and onions.
I made some spaghetti sauce keeping in mind these instructions. I have been making this for years, always pretty much the same way and got pretty good results. This time, wow! It was exceptional. I didn't know if it was the extra ingredients I decided to use (wine, fennel root) or your method. But I could detect a slight caramelized tomato flavor in the sauce, which is what I have always liked about good Italian sauce. It must have come from adding the tomato paste the way you showed. Thanks for helping me to make changes in the way I always do things and for the tomato paste hint!
Not sure of the best one but I do know that I had a cuispro one that I was not super happy with. Cuispro generally make excellent products, but I was never happy with my food mill.
Try your local Italian store, sometimes they sell cheaper ones that are actually quite good.
I bought mine for something like $30.00 from Renzullo Food Market - here it is on google maps - located on Nanaimo Street. It says Macina-Legumi on the handle (not sure if that is the brand or just the fact that it is a "vegetable mill"). It comes with 3 different-sized discs and I love it for making tomato sauce. Most Italian markets sell them and you don't have to spend a lot for a good one. Just as long as there is good contact between the press and the disc, you're good to go.
So I made this last night and it came out really well, simple but delicious. The biggest difference between my sauce and the video seems to be the consistency (mine was thinner). Going on Cook's Illustrated's taste test for whole tomatoes, I chose a variety packed in juice as opposed ot puree. (Side note: Their blind taste test of many brands of whole tomatoes had very different results; brands with citric acid universallly did better, and actually ranked best to worst from lowest pH to highest pH; held up when compared against much more expensive DOP-certified San Marzanos)
When I pressed the tomatoes through the food mill, I included all of the juice, which I think thinned out the sauce a bit too much.
Here are some thoughts I had on how to thicken the sauce, that I wanted to pass through you guys:
- I could drain the tomatoes before pressing them, and then add some of the packing juice back to the seedless mixture until I achieve the right consistency.
- I could keep cooking beyond the 45 min point to further reduce and thicken the sauce.
Firstly, be weary of taste tests - citric acid fools the palate in thinking the tomatoes are better. The best tomatoes are the ones picked at their prime, and San Marzano tomatoes are intended to be tasted only after they have been cooked, not raw (in fact, they are not ideal tomatoes eaten raw).
Bobby, you've solved your consistency issue with your first solution - the one with the most common sense. If you were cooking the sauce for a long period of time, say with browned meats in it, your second solution would then work perfectly.
Keep up your problem solving skills. Remember, the best cookbook you'll ever own is the one you write yourself from trial and error in your OWN test kitchen.
I used the sauce in the chicken parmigiana recipe (http://times.rouxbe.com/recipes/1523-chicken-parmigiana-pollo-alla-parmigiana/text) and it was amazing. After being in the oven and cooking down it was perfect -- a nice thick and delicious sauce.
I believe that in this case reducing the sauce itself, before using it in the chicken parm recipe, may have resulted in a sauce that was too thick or even pasty.
Just my $0.02.
Thanks so much for the response guys (It's my first post!) I've got a couple more batches of sauce in the freezer but will try the "drain first" method for the next batch and see how that goes.
The comment about citric acid and "fooling the palate" is interesting -- on one hand isn't that the measure of success: if it tastes good (chemical additives used within reason, e.g. not high fructose corn syrup)? I suppose I cant fully answer that until I make a batch with cheap $2/can progresso tomatoes and another with $6/can san marzanos and really do a personal taste test. Its great to know that San Marzano's don't come into their own until they are cooked, though.
Thanks for the feedback - much appreciated. Time to go review the pizza dough recipes as thats my next big venture :)
Hi everybody. First of all, let me just thanks for offering this website. Like most people, quitting my current job to pursue culinary school full time isn't an option, and this is the best alternative I've found. And I'm loving it. So here is my question:
I want to make this sauce tonight, but I'm not sure I want to make 3L worth. Does the recipe work out just the same - specifically, the cooking time - if I use only have the ingredients?
You can cut this recipe in 1/2, no problem. Cooking time will likely be reduced slightly, but the main thing is to cook the sauce to the proper consistency, so don't worry about times so much.
Great to hear you are enjoying the school. Happy cooking!
Thanks for the prompt response. And sorry for the typos (I was writing to you while making sure my students weren't cheating on their final). I have another question about onions. Does it make a difference whether we use white or yellow onions in the first step?