On Line Cookbook

Don Pomodoro Sauce

Recipe Information
A great Marinara type sauce that creates the BEST Italian Spaghetti or any favorite pasta meal!

From The Splendid Table, by Lynne Rossetto Kasper

Serves/Makes:4 or more big servings

  • 5 large cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 12 large fresh basil leaves, torn
  • 1/4 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1/8 tsp (1 ml) each salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 to 6 tbsp (90 ml) fruity extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3-1/2 pounds mixed ripe, delicious tomatoes, possibly peeled and cored (do not seed) OR
  • 2 28 oz (784 grm). cans of tomatoes, drained
  • In a 4-quart saucepan combine garlic, basil, onion, salt, pepper, and oil.
  • Heat over medium high 1 minute, no more.
  • Add tomatoes, breaking them as they go into the pan.
  • Bring to a lively bubble, uncovered, and cook 30 minutes, or until thick and the sauce is reduced by half. Stir often, watching for sticking or scorching.
  • Remove pan from heat, cover and let stand 15 minutes.
  • Italian cooks pass the sauce through a food mill to remove seeds and any skins. I prefer pureeing in a blender or food processor.
  • If desired, cool and refrigerate up to 2 days, or freeze up to 3 months.
Sauces like this simmer in kitchens from Milan to Palermo. So typical of home cooking, Don Pomodoro used to be put up in jars; these days it is frozen, ready for pasta, pizza, pot roast, lasagne and sautes. Its seasonings and the proportions of ingredients follow the dictates of regional and household traditions, but the technique rarely canges.

Italian cooks make this sauce with unpeeled fresh tomatoes or canned ones, passing it through a food mill once it s cooked. My preference is for a more rustic, juicy sauce with bits of tomato so I puree it in a blender or food processors. Only if the peel of fresh tomatoes is tough or bitter do I peel them. This is a matter of personal choice.