Sunday, September 16, 2012

marcella #3

This is the time when the tomatoes can be at their very very ripest best. And that means that this is the time for one of the best fresh tomato sauces going. Simple. Elegant. Spectacular. This is from the world's best single volume cook book ever published, The Classic Italian Cook Book by Marcella Hazan.

This is Tomato Sauce III, which we call simply Marcella #3. Here it is (slightly adapted):

Take four pounds of those fabulous ripe tomatoes. We actually get San Marzano's from our farm outside Gilroy. Wash them and cut them in half long-wise. Put a tablespoon of oil in your pot. Put in the tomatoes and cook them over a low/medium heat to get a good simmer. Cook them about fifteen minutes, until they have started to break down and throw out a lot of juice.

Run the tomatoes through the medium grate on the moule (the food mill) and put the result back in the pot. Add a quarter pound of butter, cut into chunks. Take a good size yellow onion and peel it and just cut it in half. Toss it in the pot. Add a couple of teaspoons of salt, a half teaspoon of sugar and stir. (We add a small sprig of rosemary for a tiny special effect).

Cook over a slow but steady simmer, uncovered, for about thirty minutes. Taste  (you are not going to believe it) and adjust for salt. Throw away the onion.

Here are several other fresh tomato sauces that we like, especially the one called Benedetta with lots of basil: