Rich and slow tomato sauce

🟨 Joint Convener Sally Shaw recommends this flavoursome tomato sauce

“We have an allotment, and this is a great way to use up a glut of tomatoes – it’s a recipe I’ve shared with so many friends. If you love it too, you might want to invest in a tomato press to make the prep quicker and easier. This recipe makes plenty, and can be frozen in portions until needed”

🟨 You will need a large saucepan or casserole dish to make the sauce

2 medium-sized onions, chopped
1-2 tbsps olive oil
A good pinch mixed dried herbs
2.5kg vine tomatoes
250g cherry tomatoes
1 tin chopped organic plum tomatoes
30g sundried tomatoes
3 cloves of finely-chopped garlic
Sweat the onions gently in the olive oil without colouring, then add the dried herbs
Meanwhile, remove the skin and seeds from the vine tomatoes (the seeds can add a bitter flavour and the skin is an unwanted texture)
Stab with a sharp knife and drop into boiling water for 30 seconds
Skin and quarter the cherry tomatoes. Scrape out the seeds
Add all the tomatoes to the pan with the onions, including the tinned and sundried, along with the garlic
Cook for approximately four hours over a very low heat until the sauce has reduced and thickened: it will develop an intense tomato flavour
Cool, then refrigerate or freeze as required in portion-sized tubs
Remove the calyxes (tops) from the tomato stems and add these to the sauce to give additional flavour. Remove when the sauce is cooked
Drop in any leftover parmesan rinds when you make the sauce: remove after cooking
Omit the sundried tomatoes – add about 2cm grated ginger; a bunch of basil; or 1-2 tsps of chilli flakes.2 medium-sized onions, chopped

🟨 This recipe was published in the Summer 2024 edition of u3a matters magazine