Saturday, July 2, 2011

Good Eats:: Roasted Tomato Sauce

Roasted Tomato Chicken Pasta
I can not even describe in words how delicious this healthy dish tasted! I remember learning when I was younger that the secret to spaghetti sauce was sugar, which makes sense since it's so yummy. Most yummy things I knew about then had sugar in them. But, as I've learned more about cooking and grown more health conscious (aka my metabolism isn't at hyper-speed on it's own anymore), I've discovered there are so many wonderful tastes to explore beyond the manufactured HFCS we've all gotten to know so well in our regular diets. In an effort to rid our home of this depreciatory robber of our health, I banned our favorite tomato sauce and decided to go from scratch and found it was remarkably easy and better than anything I'd ever tasted in a jar!

1 container cherry or grape tomatoes*
1 medium size vine tomato*
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1/2 c extra virgin olive oil
1/2 c basil leaves
1 clove garlic minced
* Use any kind of tomatoes you want. This was about 2.5 cups worth.

Here's how I made it:
1. Rub tomatoes in just enough olive oil to coat their skins and place in a roasting pan.
2. Roast tomatoes in the broiler for about 15 minutes, turning any burnt ones over part way through. I cut the large tomato in half and did not turn it as the skin was already up. You want the skins to get a little black so adjust your timing if necessary for your own oven. You should also be able to smell them cooking so you know the insides are nice and soft. Let cool.
3. Combine 1/4 c. olive oil, basil leaves, garlic and cooled tomatoes and juice/oil in bottom of pan into the blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. The color is a beautiful warm orange (if you are using all red tomatoes) and the roasted taste with the fresh basil burst is delightful.

We ate this on whole wheat pasta with shredded chicken. I can't wait to make it again with heirloom tomatoes when they are in season this summer. Yum!
Joy of Cooking: 75th Anniversary Edition - 2006I adapted this recipe from my fave cookbook and kitchen bible: the Joy of Cooking: 75th Anniversary Edition. Every cook, baker, mom, etc. needs a go-to reference cookbook like this that has everything in it. I use Joy because that's what my mom and my grandma both used but there are plenty other good ones out there.

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