Where I live, tomato season is in full swing. I don’t currently garden; it’s one of those hobbies that I admire but just am not sure I want to dedicate the time to. Not to mention I have a hard time keeping my house plants alive. 🙂 But, I love opening my CSA box to see what goodies we got for the week, and lately it’s been full of tomatoes! So I’ve been experimenting with lots of different tomato recipes.
If you’ve never made homemade tomato sauce from fresh tomatoes before, do not be intimidated. It’s not hard! It does take some time though, as we’ll be cooking the tomatoes for quite a while so our sauce will become thick and flavorful. You don’t need to stand over the pot the whole time though by any means, so just plan to get some laundry done or listen to a podcast or something. I wouldn’t leave your pot completely unattended, but you certainly don’t need to hover. So don’t be intimated by the cooking time here.
Also, if you happen to garden (high five to you!), feel free to double or triple this based on how many tomatoes you have. This is just how many I had on hand, and it will make about 2 heaping cups of sauce. Feel free to make more and freeze if you like.
3 lbs. and 10 oz of tomatoes, any variety that you like or have is fine
1/2 white or yellow onion
salt, pepper, and a big pinch of cayenne
First heat a large pot of water to boiling. Have another bowl of cold water with ice set to the side. Remove the stem area and slice a small X in the bottom of each tomato.
Blanch the tomatoes in the boiling water for 30-45 seconds, until you see the skin beginning to peel off. Remove to the cold water.
Cut a whole onion in half, and the half you plan to use, remove any papery skin but leave the onion intact so it’s all one big piece (if it falls into two pieces over time, that’s fine). Peel the skin from the orange. I use a potato peeler to do this and it works well. You’re looking to get big, long pieces of orange skin, but not much of the white pith underneath. A little bit is OK, but aim to get mostly the orange skin and not the white pith as it can be a little bitter. Give the tomatoes a rough chop or blend for a couple seconds in a blender.
In a large pot combine the tomatoes, onion, and orange skins. Season with just a little salt and pepper, but don’t go crazy as we’ll add more later. Cook over low/medium heat for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes. The tomatoes will break down and much of the liquid will reduce.
Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman