Following is a recipe for a very basic tomato sauce that was inspired by some strange torpedo shaped tomatoes I found earlier in the week at the market in Campo di Fiori. The vendor explained that these tomatoes were from Naples and ideal for making tomato sauce. If you feel that basic tomato sauce is not worth your time you should really reconsider and give it a shot. The wonderful thing about this sauce is that like all basic sauces it is really the foundation for whatever additional ingredients you would like to add depending on the final dish you are preparing. One further note is that I did not peel the tomatoes as I used a food mill to process the cooked tomatoes which pretty much eliminates the peel. If you are using a blender, which is perfectly acceptable, you may want to peel the tomatoes first. Otherwise just puree and pass the final puree through a china cap strainer or fine mesh strainer.
First and foremost it is very important here to have fresh ripe tomatoes. This sauce has no room for pinkish hard grocery store tomatoes that are kept at 34 degrees Fahrenheit. The downside here is that when you leave with these fresh ripe tomatoes you have to be committed and ready to run with the sauce making. So let’s get started!
Just one more note: I have not really included quantities in this recipe as it sort of depends on what or how many tomatoes you can find suitable for the sauce. Also
Basic Tomato Sauce Recipe
Chop all tomatoes into small to medium size pieces.
Place chopped tomatoes in a pot with cold water just enough to cover the chopped tomatoes. Season with salt.
Cook chopped tomatoes until very soft. They should be falling apart.
Set up food mill and gradually pass the tomatoes through the mill until all have been processed.
Return the passed tomatoes to the pot used to cook the tomatoes and reduce the sauce further until you have reached desired consistency. I reduced the sauce to a fairly thick consistency.
While sauce is reducing add finely chopped garlic.
At the end of the reducing add torn leaves of Basil. Season with salt as needed.
Note: You may add whatever herbs or spices, with or without garlic and Basil, as you wish to the freshly passed sauce. I just prefer the Basil and Garlic at this point in late Summer.