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    Wednesday, March 11, 2009

    Grandma's Awesome Tomato Sauce

    I thought this post with the simple "Spaghettini with Tomato Sauce" was a good entry for Ruth Presto Pasta Night 2nd Birthday this time being hosted by Ben of What's Cooking

    It’s homemade Tomato ketchup time. I have been using over the last umpteen years, tomatoes from an orchard out of town, in Riverhead.

    It only takes 20 minutes on the motorway to get there and it is worth it. It is owned by an older man Steve Jelas who is 82 and still gardening. His particular strain of tomatoes is what I guess they call in USA "heirloom".

    They are divine and they make the best sauce. Look at the colour.
    On the day I came back from the orchard, it was too late to make the ketchup but I did make a delicious sauce for pasta.
    Really simple just to celebrate the taste of the fruit.
    Onion and garlic sautéed in olive oil
    Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of sugar
    Sprinkle red chili flakes not a lot just a little taste treat.
    Add chopped tomatoes and cook down only about 5 minutes.
    I love the taste of fresh tomatoes I didn’t want the concentrated flavour.
    Add some fresh oregano
    Taste and adjust seasoning.

    Cook some spaghettini and toss in the sauce.

    So beautiful I didn’t even add any Parmesan cheese.
    Just the wonderful tomatoes. Brilliant.
    So Day Two sauce time.
    I bought enough for 2 batches but I only had enough bottles for one.
    Will have to fossick around for more for tomorrow.
    Look at this sauce.
    I can’t give you the recipe it is a family secret!!! Passed on from my Mother…Actually you need your local pharmacy to provide you with a special essence, which is the signature taste of this ketchup.
    I have to get mine through my friend Anne who lives in another city and has a friendly local pharmacist. It’s a dying recipe unfortunately. Young pharmacist’s don’t seem to be interested in continuing the formula. So we are making the most of it while we can.

    But it is pretty
    I am going to have to drink plenty more wine and gin and tonics to get more bottles.

    But we have had a visitor in our house.
    Yesterday afternoon a baby bird popped in. He wandered around and I opened all the windows for him to fly out.
    It seems he only has one wing and can’t fly. He disappeared later in the afternoon so I thought he had gone outside and I though he had gone but no he had hopped al the way down our stairs to the lower level bedroom. A mammoth task.
    I tried to lure him by laying a trail of breadcrumbs, a la Hansel and Gretel, but he was too cunning for me.

    Sp I left him down there. To our surprise, suddenly he appeared back in the lounge he had hopped all the way up the stairs, What a Champion!
    How clever is that?
    He also found his way outside so now our doors to the courtyard are closed so he doesn’t get back inside. Our carpet doesn’t need to be a bird toilet.
    Of course he is cat fodder, so our plan is to take him to the SPCA today. He is really cute but he has to go.

    By the way I have found enough bottles for the next batch, without punishing my liver!


    Asha said...

    Love it. In Summer when I get loads of Tomatoes, I do the same. Make sauce and use it almost everyday in everything until my family get tired of it! :))

    So Simple said...

    I think we have about another 3-4 weeks of tomatoes Asha. More trips out west for me I think.
    By the way the bird has gone. Either he found his wing or next door's cat got him...hope it was the former.

    Ben said...

    Those tomatoes do look pretty! Thanks for sharing this recipe with PPN and I wish there was a way to get that secret recipe *wink* LOL

    Ruth Daniels said...

    What a spectacular batch of tomatoes. We're still in dead of winter, so no way for local heirloom least not for months.

    Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights.

    So Simple said...

    Thanks Ben and Ruth Those tomatoes are fabulous. I still have a few kilos Pasta sauce making today I think.

    Anali said...

    Homemade ketchup! Never heard of it. But it must be spectacular! And a special essence? How mysterious!!

    Max mickle said...

    Wow!! what a great idea. your tomato sauce is looks so Scrumptious. My father is a huge fan of tomato sauce and I always try to make one for him whenever we see my parents. He has yet to be fully blown away by any of the recipes i've tried. Simplicity is key, and yours looks perfect! Can't wait to try it.