This tomato sauce is among my favourite dishes. It’s easy to make, healthy, tasty, and versatile. There’s so many ways to present it and it can be enjoyed for either lunch or dinner.Since finding the recipe on TheKitchn last summer, I’ve prepared the sauce a number of times with slight variations each time to suit whomever is enjoying the dish.
Here are a few variations you can try:
- Make it a raw meal by making zucchini “noodles” with a spiral turner
- Serve with cold or hot spaghetti noodles
- Make it vegetarian by excluding the meat
- Include a salty, cured meat such as prosciutto, sliced into bite-sized pieces
- Use a blender to puree the ingredients into a sauce-like consistency (do this after marinating the mixture)
This sauce is fantastic because you can make a large portion, set some aside in a dish and pack it for lunch. By lunch time, it’s marinated enough to enjoy! You can also let it marinate all day and simply prepare your choice of pasta when you arrive home and dinner is ready in 15 minutes!
Try not to put the tomatoes in the fridge at any point. I find that chilling them takes away from the flavour of the finished meal. However, I do always store the leftovers in the fridge and let it warm to room temperature before enjoying.
Uncooked tomato sauce
Adapted from The Kitchn
- 1 pint of cherry or grape tomatoes – approximate cost $2.00
- 1 pint of mixed tomatoes (any combination of yellow, orange, pink, green, etc.) – approximate cost $2.00
- 3 medium-sized Roma tomatoes – approximate cost $2.00
- 4 large garlic cloves, finely minced – approximate cost $0.50
- 10 leaves of basil, cut into fine strips – approximate cost $0.75
- 1/2 cup olive oil – approximate cost $1.50
- Salt to taste – approximate cost $0.05
- 200 grams of meat, such as prosciutto or bacon (Optional) – approximate cost $3.50
- Parmesan cheese (optional) – approximate cost $0.50
- Slice all of the various tomatoes into bite-sized pieces.
- Place garlic, basil, and olive oil in a large serving bowl. Stir mixture well. Cover with plastic wrap and allow mixture to sit on the counter for 3-4 hours.
- Place tomatoes in olive oil mixture. Stir mixture until all tomatoes are coated with oil and garlic is evenly distributed throughout the sauce.
- Recover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the mixture marinate for 2-4 hours (leave on the counter).
- Note: If you don’t have time to marinate the basil in the oil before adding it to the tomatoes to marinate, you can skip this step and mix it with the tomatoes immediately. But there’s more flavour if you can include the step.
- Add salt to taste.
- Serve over cooked spaghetti noodles or spiralled zucchini “noodles” (for a raw dish) and, if desired, top with more fresh basil leaves, meat of your choice, and Parmesan cheese.
Makes about 6 servings (approximate cost: $1.55 per serving of sauce without meat, or $2.13 per serving of sauce with meat).
You can use almost any tomatoes you have on hand, but having a small variety of tomatoes tends to give the dish more flavour. If you’re not using smaller tomatoes, use 6-7 medium-large sized tomatoes.