Saturday, December 13, 2008

Fresh Tomato and Garlic Pasta Sauce

This is my innovation and revision on a recipe given to me by Sharon Sweeney when we were work colleagues at Brook Furniture Leasing and Sales. This is an uncooked sauce that is heart-healthy, meant to be prepared at least an hour before serving, refrigerated, then allowed to stand at room temperature so that flavors blend well. I've successfully made the sauce a day before serving it at a party.

1. Parboil 3 large ripe tomatoes in a pot of boiling water to loosen its skin. After peeling the skin, de-seed (yes, take off the seeds!) and chop these tomatoes in a food processor (I use a Cuisinart). Set aside the tomatoes in a glass bowl and refrigerate (yes, use a plastic wrap to cover the bowl).

2. Using the same food processor (no, you don't need to wash it), process the following ingredients, one after the other. NOTE: You can use your own ratio of ingredients. For instance, I tend to use more cilantro (chopped off from its stems with kitchen scissors) and I therefore adjust the amount of olive oil I use (meaning, I add slightly more olive oil).

a. chopped sweet basil, 2 tbsps
b. chopped fresh chives, 1 tbsp
c. chopped cilantro or chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley, 2 tbsps
d. finely grated Fontina or Mozzarella cheese, 1/2 cup
e. finely-chopped fresh garlic, 3 cloves

3. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the tomatoes and ingredients (in step number 2. Add salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate the sauce in a covered glass bowl. Let stand at room temperature one hour before serving.

4. Cook 8 ozs. (1 package) of dried or 12 ozs. fresh spaghetti or any desired pasta until "al dente." I personally prefer fusilli.

5. Combine sauce and hot pasta in a pre-heated bowl.

6. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

This recipe generously serves 4 people.
The pasta sauce takes about 15 minutes to make.

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