Homegrown Tomato Sauce
Homegrown Tomato Sauce
Summer flash-back!! I bet you are wondering why I am blogging about tomatoes in late October!! We are expecting a hard frost on the farm on Thursday night which means the end of our harvest season for field-grown tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers. Our picking crew spent the last 3 days harvesting everything from the plants because after a hard freeze, cell walls will be damaged and the “fruits” will no longer be of edible quality. So…. If you have veggie plants or tender herbs like basil, now is the time to harvest everything you want to preserve.
Since we have so many beautiful tomatoes here at Eckert’s (and they are only 49 cents a pound!), I couldn’t resist the opportunity to make several batches of marinara-style sauce for the dinner and for the freezer. This versatile sauce can be served over pasta as-is or combined with browned ground beef. You can easily modify the sauce by adding cream or by melting cheese in it or by adding a variety of fresh herbs. It is also a wonderful base for winter soups.
I most recently served it over penne pasta with fresh grated Parmesan cheese. I love the way the sauce allows the delicious flavor of late-season, homegrown tomatoes to really sing!
Eat Well, Angie
3 ½ lb fresh tomatoes
2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil 2 cloves minced garlic ½ tsp Kosher salt Several twists of fresh ground pepper
Preheat the oven 450 degrees. Cut the tomatoes in half and place cut side down on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet (in lieu of parchment paper, you can used a oiled baking pan). Roast tomatoes for 10 minutes or until skins start to look wrinkled.
While the tomatoes are roasting, sauté garlic in the olive oil over medium-low heat in a large saucepan for about 3 minutes.
Remove tomatoes from oven and allow to cool slightly. With a knife gently coax the skins away from the flesh (they should come off easily) and discard them. Place the tomatoes in the saucepan with the garlic and mash them with a potato masher. Simmer the tomatoes for 10 minutes to allow the flavors to combine. Ladle the tomato sauce into a blender or a food processor. Be sure to vent the lid because you are working with a hot liquid (we took the handle off the lid and covered the opening with a paper towel.) Puree to your desired thickness.
Serve immediately over cooked pasta or refrigerate until cool. Once fully cooled, this sauce can be stored in the refrigerator for 3 days or in the freezer for 3 months in an air tight container.
*Farm note- The hard frost will not have a major impact on the quality of our
as they have higher internal sugar content than the veggies. Visit our harvest hotline at
to learn more about apple and pumpkin harvest.