Hello everyone, today The Engaged Home is being hijacked by the husband of the home to share with you a great recipe that I’ve been using for about a year now.
Do you love tomato sauce but worry about the sugar, salt, or preservative content in the jared or canned tomato products at your local grocer? Ever wanted to know exactly what goes into your food? Ever wanted to eat the best tomato sauce EVER? Well, you’re in luck, because I’m going to share with you a homemade tomato sauce that will completely ruin other recipes for you. It is completely tweak-able, and absolutely delicious! You will need about 2 pounds of roma tomatoes, 1 large white or yellow onion, 4 cloves of fresh garlic, 1/3 cup of olive oil, dried italian seasonings, and salt/pepper.
Start by washing about 2 pounds of tomatoes. The Clay family really loves using roma tomatoes because of their sweetness, low “juice” content, and how cheap we can typically find them. You are going to start cutting them in half, and placing them flesh side down into a 9′ by 13′ pyrex pan
Want a pro tip about using tomatoes? No matter what kind of tomato you are cutting (outside of perhaps heirloom), the internal structures runs top to bottom. So if you want to keep your tomato’s juices inside of it’s flesh, try cutting from “pole to pole”. If done correctly, it should look something like this:
Once you have all of your tomatoes cut, fully unwrap an onion, cut off the ends, and slice it from “pole to pole” as well. Again, this keeps most of the layers intact. Don’t worry about cutting it down any further. It can roast as halves just fine! The hardest part may be trying to make it all fit into your pan. If you need to stack some, it’s ok, but you really want as much surface area in direct contact with the bottom of your pan as possible. This helps the bottoms of your vegetables sear as the outside of your vegetables roast off. At this point, crush (but leave whole) your 4 cloves of garlic and squeeze them into your pan wherever possible. This is also when you want to season your pan of vegetables. I typically use about 2 tablespoons of an italian blended seasonings. This typically includes oregano, italian parsley, basil, and thyme. Also, you will want to heavily season with salt and pepper (maybe two tablespoons each as well, but you can also season after blending). Add about 1/3 cup of good quality olive oil to the mix and try to evenly coat everything. It should all look like this:
Now it’s time to roast up your veggies! This is by far the most important step. Roasting the tomatoes will bring out their natural sweetness while bringing some slight char to the mix. It’s a beautiful thing. I typically roast mine for about an hour between 375-400 degrees. It really just all depends on how much char you want on your vegetables. If you want to stay away from it, either roast on lower temperatures or for shorter amounts of time. I really love the “roastiness” that char brings to the sauce, but you are the boss of your tomato sauce… (Nod to Chef John from YouTube). Anyway, once you pull out the pan, it should look like this:
You now have some options about how to finalize your prep work. If you have a good potato masher hand instrument, the tomatoes will fall apart and the garlic will mash quite well on their own, but then you have to cut up your roasted onions. If you have a hand blender or regular kitchen blender, you can also use that. But, by far, I love to use our food processor on things like this.
I love our food processor in general. (Seriously, it’s a love affair. Sometimes Nathana gets jealous…) We use our food processor on things like homemade peanut butter, hummus, soups, grating blocks of cheese quickly, slicing vegitables, blending up our Holiday Oreo Truffles, and I could countinue to go on. Like I said, I have a problem.
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Anyway, I load up the food processor, pulse it a couple of times, and then set it on high for about 3 minutes. I really wanted the content fine because this sauce was going to be transformed into awesome Roasted Tomato Chickpea Soup (keep on reading, it’s so worth it!). This is also a great chance to add in any fresh basil, rosemary, or thyme that you may randomly have laying around the kitchen. (Who doesn’t?!?!) When everything was blended, it made a little more than 2 cups of fantastic tomato sauce.
At this point, you could add your favorite pasta, use it as pizza sauce, or suck it straight out with a straw (trust me, it’s that good). The Killer Tomato Sauce recipe is officially done at this point. But, I went a little farther with the sauce and turned it into soup by cooking up some chickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans). Adding the sauce to a large pan, I poured another 2 cups of water, 1/2 a cup of “half and half” cream, and 1 1/2 cups of cooked chickpeas. I turned this homemade tomato sauce into a great fall soup to pair with grilled cheese sandwiches (we used provolone cheese).
I hope that you give this Killer Homemade Tomato Sauce or Tomato Chickpea Soup a chance this fall and winter. It’s a perfect way to add freshness into your favorite pasta dishes or soup bowls!
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