Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Best Ever Oven Roasted Tomato Sauce


After many years of making "scratch" tomato sauce from cans, I am finally getting back to my roots.  Southern Italian, slow roasted tomato sauce.  I was fortunate enough to be given a case of delicious Roma (also known as Paste) tomatoes.  These are a dense tomatoes with few seeds and they make a divine tomato sauce.  That is exactly what I thought as my friend asked if I wanted some.  Visions of tomato sauce, pasta, and pizza dancing in my head.

After diving into the case of tomatoes I discovered there were about half that were very ripe and about half that were nice and firm.  Are you thinking what I am thinking???  Sun dried tomatoes too!!!  But, lets get back on topic here.

I used the ripe tomatoes to make this delicious tomato sauce with rich and complex flavor!!!  I double the recipe when I make this sauce.


Oven Roasted Tomato Sauce - Yield 3 Cups
18 ripe Roma (Paste) tomatoes (halved and cored)
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 small onion, diced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper (fresh cracked - medium grind)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
2 tablespoons fresh basil, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped

Preheat oven to 300°.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat mat.

In a microwave safe bowl combine onion, garlic and olive oil.  Microwave for 30 seconds to infuse the garlic and onion into the oil.   When you remove bowl from the oven you will smell the heavenly aroma of garlic and onion.  Add salt, pepper, italian seasoning and sugar to bowl and stir to combine.
Place cut tomatoes in a large mixing bowl, pour in the olive oil mixture over top and toss with your hands or a spoon.  Make sure all tomatoes are well coated.  Place tomatoes cut side up on the baking sheet.  Sprinkle with fresh basil, rosemary and any remaining olive oil mixture from the prep bowl.






Place on middle rack in oven.  Cook for 2 hours at 300°.  If doubling recipe rotate pans ½ way through.  After 2 hours of slow roasting, your tomatoes will look slightly caramelized like this




turn oven up to 400° and roast for 30 minutes, or until the tomatoes start to brown.  They will be caramelized and delicious.  If you prefer a brighter tomato sauce pull them out before they brown.  Approximately 10-15 minutes after you turn the oven to 400°.  These roasted for the full 30 minutes, you can see the edges of the tomato are nice and browned.



Remove pan from oven and transfer tomatoes to the bowl of a food processor.  Process until tomato sauce is at your desired consistency.  I like mine saucy, not too chunky.



Note:  The tomatoes will cook faster if you remove the seeds, so watch your time.

I have also made this without the onions and garlic.  I put the tomatoes on the pan and drizzled the olive oil over them.  Then sprinkled with the remaining ingredients.  The fresh garlic and onion impart such a deep level of flavors that I would recommend using these ingredients.

36 comments:

  1. Can't wait to try it at last! Thanks, girl. Love the blog.

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  2. Again...mmmmm.

    Can't wait to make this!

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  3. looks yumm .. do visit my space at

    http://keephappybelly.blogspot.com/

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  4. Oh I am making this too, so my meatballs will turn out just like yours :)

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  5. I just made this. awesome! i reduced the time by 15 minutes for baking it for two hours but that was mainly because the parchment paper was so blackened. then i put on 400 degrees for only 15 because i was afraid of the paper making too much smoke. the tomatoes and sauce turned out amazing!!! but - it only made a small jar for me. maybe the tomatoes were just smaller. Is there any way to thin it out? i don't know what to use that wouldn't change the flavor. what do you suggest?

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    1. I am really happy to hear that you loved it. I use water to thin out sauce, just add a little at a time. Hope that helps.

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    2. great!! thank you so much!

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  6. Thanks for sharing, it sound wonderful Tomato sauce that used oven baked tomatoes !! Tomatoes are cheap in Malaysia, so I will make some but since the onion and garlic will get burn faster as they are much smaller in size, I will strain them out from the oil after microwaved them and sprinkle them with the herbs much later to avoid burn !! Thanks again.

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  7. I am writing for a few reasons. firstly, Yaya gave me and Don this website and told us how fun and good the food was to make. I immediately went for the oven baked tomato sauce and what a pleasure and fun to make. I have since made it twice and expounded up the original receip to include things we also like in our sauce. I have eatn it plain on noodles over chicken an dnow am making tonight a pan full of sauce by adding about 1 cup of water to this already awesome recipe. Devine tasting. Leaving no juice on the plate. We love it. I cant wait to try other recipes. Thank you for sharing yours.

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  8. Third times a charm for this sauce. I still ad a cup of water and it is amazing. Tonight is a recipe for your chicken and olive recipe. Love cooking your style!

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  9. I just read this recipe for the first time. I have only been a member of the site for about 6 months and clicked on this link in todays email from you. What a great recipe!!! I love to make my own tomato sauce but this one sounds better than anything I have ever done because I never thought of roasting the tomatoes in the oven to make sauce!! I grow my own Roma tomatoes and I use them all the time for sauce, imagine how yummy this will taste with them!!! Thanks so much for connecting me with this recipe this morning. I love your site and have tried many of your recipes already in the few months I have been a member. Keep up the GREAT work!!!

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  10. this has me craving pasta for dinner!

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  11. This doesn't say anything about storage??? I'm wonder if anyone has canned it and what is the process after making it? How long is the shelf life?

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    1. Hi Diana! Thanks for stopping by. I have not canned this sauce yet. I have froze a lot last winter and defrosted it this summer and it was perfect. Let me know if you can it and how it goes.

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    2. I also and a few red peppers quarterd, one onion coarsely chopped. I do not use parchment paper in my roaster. After blending it, I add 1TBSP balsamic vingar per pint, blend give a quick pulse or two. Then I can pint size jars in hot water bath for 35 min. really yummy :)
      ps. also I only use 1 TBSP olive oil. when I am cooking chicken, shrimp or whatever protein for my meal I am using olive oil before I add this sauce.

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  12. I have a ton of tomatoes, so I'm going to try this tomato sauce :) Thanks for sharing!
    *HUGS*

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  13. Do you need to use Roma tomatoes? I have a garden full of beefsteak, jet star and a few others. What do you think? On canning the sauce...just look in the Ball Canning Book. There are many similar recipes and it will let you know if and for how long to process in a water bath. Just remember that there are some ingredients that need a pressure canner, so just give it a look. If you don't have the Ball Canning Guide just go to their website.

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    1. I have only made this recipe with Roma's they really are the perfect sauce tomatoes. Any type of paste tomatoes will work. I have made a sauce with cherry tomatoes before too. I would be interest to see how is turns out. Let us know how it goes!

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    2. I just did this with some Romas from my garden plus about half a peck of beefsteaks from the farmstand. It tastes great, but it's on the thin side -- I'm simmering it for a while to let it thicken up.

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  14. made this last night and having it tonight.... I added chilli to my oil onion and garlic mix and its blooming amazing..... thank you so much for this recipe... also making the meatballs to y posted to go with it <3 this site have made many dishes from this blog..... thank you

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  15. I have a bunch of frozen home grown tomatoes. If I thaw them, do you think they'd work for this if I sliced them up?

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  16. Where is the print button?

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  17. How much does one recipe make, large family?

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    1. It says it yields 3 cups. She also mentioned that she doubles the recipe when making the sauce. It sounds delicious!. I'm pinning it!!

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  18. Do your remove the tomato skin before you put in the food processor?

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    1. I never have, but if you have a food mill you can use that to separate the skins. I make it and serve it every year for Christmas and have never had any complaints. I do have a sauce attachment coming for my stand mixer, so next time I make it I will try it and see if it changes the texture or maybe I will like it better. Enjoy and let us know how it goes.,

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  19. Doesn't your garlic burn and turn acrid with the long cooking and being chopped finely? I'm wondering if it might not be better adding it halfway through cooking?

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    1. You can try that. I have not had any problems. Enjoy and let us know how it goes.

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  20. Are you slow roasting for such a long time in order to dry the tomatoes out, (less juice?) or is it strictly for flavor enhancement? I need to do something with the billion (give or take) cherry tomatoes I'm stuck with and I don't know what would happen to them if I roasted them for such a long time...

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    1. Slow roasting imparts a deep tomato flavor. I would make this sauce with cherry tomatoes, just watch your cook time. They are much smaller so they will cook faster. Enjoy and let us know how it goes.

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  21. I changed the seasoning slightly (just personal taste) and this was amazing. I think its the best sauce I've ever made. Thank you for the recipe!

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    1. So happy you loved it! I make it every Christmas for our family gathering and there is never a drop left.

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  22. The Best Ever doesn't describe this sauce. It is better than that! Many years ago when I was young and very poor, I was fortunate enough to visit Italy. This sauce, over homemade spafehtti, tastes exactly like the pasta with tomato sauce I used to eat back then (the only thing I could afford).

    We made our first batch with San Marzano's from a local farm and fresh herbs (thyme, sage, marjoram and oregano mainly), onions and garlic from our garden. We then canned it for use this winter.

    We are making our second batch today, with homegrown Tomato Juliet (over-sized cherries). I can't wait to see if this batch tastes as divine as the first one!

    Thank you so much for sharing!!!

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  23. do the skins dissapear

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    1. Depending on how powerful your blender is, it will chop the skins up very fine so it is not bothersome (I actually like the flavor with the skins). You could also push the sauce through a fine mesh strainer after making it too to remove any large pieces of skin. Enjoy!

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