May
04
2017

And now, for a matter of some importance: tomato sauce seasonings.

I’m throwing together something from scratch (and a can of tomato paste), and I need some spice thoughts. Oregano/basil/a little sugar, sure, but: anything else?  Garlic, pepper, what?  I’m already tossing in some scallions and red peppers already.

The oil’s heating now for sauteing the scallions and peppers, so this is a matter of some urgency.

Written by in: Cookery | Tags:
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19 Comments

  • Skip says:

    Shrooms, hot italian sausage? Kind of depends on the end target for the sauce, I guess. I just always add what sounds good, in what seems like appropriate amounts…

  • JustDave says:

    Why sugar, though? Been making my own tom+meat sauce since Cooter was a pup, and never ever put any sugar in it (just salt, pepper, oregano).

    .

    Only potential drawback is that it will spoil you for store bought brands, which taste unpleasantly sweet to my palate. #NotEvenSorry

    • Moe_Lane says:

      We did that Blue Apron thing a couple of weeks ago as part of our staycation, and one of the recipes involved a do-it-yourself tomato sauce. It said sugar, we liked how it came out, I tossed in a spoonful this time. Seemed to work out OK, but I may try not doing it next time.

      • AndaO says:

        brown sugar rather than white sugar.

        or red wine.

        same result.

        What I have been liking is throwing in capers & black olives.

  • Luke says:

    In addition to oregano and basil…
    Thyme, rosemary, marjoram(!), black pepper, salt, garlic, onion.
    Maybe some red wine or lemon juice.

  • jeboyle says:

    (Takes Notes)

    • Moe_Lane says:

      That’s one of the reasons why I put these up: I’ve noticed that many of my readers cook.

      • qixlqatl says:

        Mostly on the grill, but yes 😀 I smoke mean pork loin…
        .
        Ever give any thought to growing some of your own herbs and spices? Many of them are quite hardy and prolific, and fresh beats dried 10-1 easily, and nothing beats the satisfaction of using home grown in home cooked:D (IMHO, YMMV)

  • JAB says:

    For something like this, I like following a recipe because when I’m using 4-5 different spices I never end up with them balanced well.

    Alton Brown has a recipe, but it starts with slow roasting 20 tomatoes. Yeah, no.

    Haven’t tried this, but it looks reasonable:

    http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/marinara-sauce-recipe

  • acat says:

    Throw out the tomatoes.
    .
    Start with 16oz of peaches and 4-8oz of pineapple. Frozen works, fresh is more work.
    .
    Roast both in a parchment-lined jelly roll pan (a cookie sheet with edges) at 350 for about 30 minutes.
    .
    Dump the entire thing into a deep stock pot. Trust me, deep is better.
    .
    Using an immersion (stick-type) blender, puree the fruit. Be thorough, lumps are bad.
    .
    Warm it up until bubbling.
    .
    Add vinegar, honey, ginger, onion powder, clove, mustard powder, black pepper, salt, a bit more ginger, and nutmeg .. If anyone asks, I can run down the amounts I use.
    .
    Whisk (or blend, since you’ve already got the stick blender out and everything) together.
    .
    Simmer (it bubbles and spits a bit, thus the deep stock pot means less cleanup) for 20-30 minutes, stirring intermittently.
    .
    Now, you’ve got a naturally sweet fruit base to add some oregano, thyme, basil, parsley, and maybe a bit more onion to.
    .
    Mew

    • bennamc says:

      This sounds very interesting, what are the amounts of vinegar etc that you used. Do you use this as you would a tomato sauce or is this something you add to another sauce.

      • acat says:

        This works more like a catsup than tomato sauce or tomato paste.
        .
        Add browned ground beef, and you’ve got a very nice “sloppy joe”, add noodles to that and you’ve approached a too-sweet spaghetti with meat sauce.
        .
        For italian stuff, it will accept the typical oregano/basil/thyme combo seasonings adequately, although an alfredo or pesto is usually better flavored.
        .
        Mix a batch heavier on pineapple, slit a pork tenderloin lengthwise and fill with sauce, then bake .. comes out nice and tender.
        .
        Also works nicely everywhere catsup works**, smear it on a burger, dip fries in it, whatever.
        .
        Honey – depending on how sweet I want it, somewhere between 1/3 and 2/3 of a cup of honey.
        .
        Vinegar – I usually use about 1/2 cup of cider vinegar, rice wine vinegar and closer to 2/3 cup if I’m using it for savory rather than sweet.
        .
        1 teaspoon mustard
        2 teaspoons onion powder
        1 teaspoon ginger
        1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
        1/8 teaspoon clove
        1 1/2 tsp salt
        .
        Increase mustard, onion, ginger by 1/4 tsp if angling toward savory.
        .
        Mew
        .
        .
        .
        ** As a Chicago cat, I cannot tell you to try it on hot dogs as catsup of any kind on a hot dog is sacrilegious.

  • Belcatar says:

    probably late, but have you considered using capers?

  • Freddie Sykes says:

    I always add about a tsp of anise seed to my sauce. And no tomato paste but one can of whole tomatoes blended with a hand wand and one of crushed tomatoes for a lighter sauce.

    • acat says:

      Hmmm. Anise, huh? I’ll have to try that.
      .
      Mew

      • Freddie Sykes says:

        I misspoke as I meant fennel seed but I expect that they would be similar. Full recipe: garlic, onions, red wine, olive oil, oregano, basil, fennel, red and black pepper, salt and good whole and crushed canned tomatoes with optional mushrooms and ripe peppers. I add sausage for meat or a can of anchovies early on as a back ground if a fish sauce and then add the seafood at the end so as not to overcook.

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