Charlie and I took a quick trip to celebrate our anniversary. We went to Puerto Rico and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. I plan to draft a post full of pictures (not too many, promise) to document the fun. But right now, I'm swimming upstream a bit as I try to do two weeks of tasks in one (because I was not on the ball enough to get things done before we left).
We were gone for only five days, but it felt like forever. And I mean that in both a good and a bad way. The good: I feel refreshed. The bad: I missed the boys like crazy. I have not been away from them for anything close to that length of time. It just felt odd and unsettling. I am sure you know how it is. It was, however, a long enough time to get me out of the groove of cooking (though you can be sure that I am on the hunt for recipes for some of the dishes we sampled--incredible!).
I will be raiding the freezer this week for most of our meals, no doubt. And I've already penciled in a certain pantry-friendly tomato sauce I finally tried (and fell in love with) over the winter. If you try it, you may wonder if it can really be that good considering its simplicity. Believe me, it is.
It made the rounds on many of my favorite cooking blogs: Smitten Kitchen, Amateur Gourmet, Orangette, and so on. And it truly is sublime. I say that mostly because of how it tastes. But its real star power--in my kitchen at least--is it does not require this over-scheduled momma to go to the market.
Tomato Sauce with Butter and Onions
Adapted from Marcela Hazan’s Essentials of Italian Cooking
- 28 ounces whole peeled tomatoes from a can (San Marzano, if you can find them--as you can see, I was out. Any good canned tomatoes will do. I've also used crushed tomatoes, which was fine, but reduce the simmering time indicated below)
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 medium-sized yellow onion, peeled and halved
- Salt to taste (you will likely not need salt if your tomatoes are salted)
Place the tomatoes, onion and butter in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Bring the sauce to a full simmer, then lower the heat to keep the sauce at a slow, steady simmer for about 45 minutes, or until droplets of fat float free of the tomatoes. Stir occasionally, crushing the tomatoes against the side of the pot with a wooden spoon. Remove from heat, discard the onion, add salt to taste, if needed. Keep warm while you prepare your pasta.
Serve with spaghetti, with or without grated parmesan cheese. I actually prefer the sauce without cheese. And as I am like a mouse when it comes to cheese, this is notable.