We love tomatoes in this house, and would hate to see a single one meet an unfulfilling end. A tomato only goes in the bin here if it can physically walk there. There is just no reason to ever discard such a beautiful, tasty and nutritious fruit. Not only is it full of gorgeous vitamins, but it also contains lypocene, a powerful antioxidant which is said to protect against some forms of cancer. It is full of flavour, adaptable and if you are that way inclined, easy to grow, so we want you to feel the tomato love!
The truth of course, is that we like to consume our tomatoes in their natural prime – firm, shiny and glorious. Once they ‘go over the top’ we are not so inclined to their charms. But we have a never fail solution to make sure you can enjoy your tomatoes to their full. We saw Hugh Fearnly-Whittingstall grating them into some soup recently, and we are big fans of that approach, but here is our Universal Tomato Sauce – the basis for a million and one family favourites and super easy to make.
UNIVERSAL TOMATO SAUCE
- A pile of over ripe tomatoes, chopped or grated.
- Half an onion chopped finely.
- Other bits and bobs you may have in the fridge, chopped finely, eg. carrot, celery, peppers.
- A squeeze of easy garlic.
- Herbs if you like.
- A generous squeeze of tomato puree.
- Soften the onion along with the garlic.
- Soften the other veg and throw in the tomatoes.
- Cook until it has all broken down and then whizz up with a stick blender or liquidiser.
- Use immediately or freeze in portions or pots.
HOW TO USE IT
Here are our suggestions. We are sure you will think of more!
- Pizza – on pizza bases, ciabattas, panini, muffins or whatever, use as pizza paste – just add an extra squeeze of tomato puree and top with your favourite toppings.
- Pasta Sauce – add to mince meat or just plain pasta, adding extra ingredients that you like, eg. peas, courgettes, etc.
- Ratatouille – add to courgettes, aubergines and peppers to make a quick ratatouille.
- Soup – add half a litre of vegetable or chicken stock to make a delicious tomato soup, or other vegetables or pulses to make something more substantial.
- Tray Bakes – pour over chicken or sausages with other vegetables, and bake in the oven.