RECIPE: Fresh No-Cook Tomato Sauce

IMG_0430I came across this recipe accidentally, and the version I found used brie in it, which was perfect since we had some brie in the fridge and no intentions of eating it.  However, after discovering the brie had gone bad, I decided to make some alterations to this recipe and come up with something new.  Coming from a family who made a sauce every Sunday, I felt some pressure trying a new kind of tomato sauce.  This ended up coming out really really well and was a nice fresh twist for a summery tomato sauce.

What You’ll Need:

2 pounds of tomatoes (for me, this was 5 on-the-vine tomatoes)

1 pound pasta (something long & stringy, like linguine)

2 cloves of garlic

1/4 cup fresh chopped basil

1/2 cup ricotta cheese (or more, because it’s delicious)

salt & pepper to taste

First, bring a large pot of water to boil.  Make sure you salt the water, and while you wait for it to boil, you can prepare the sauce.  I tried grating the tomatoes and it was difficult and time consuming. I kept feeling like I was going to slice my fingers and the tomato skin ended up in large, chewy chunks.  I only did one tomato this way and threw the rest in my blender for a quick pulse.  About 10 seconds later I had perfectly chopped tomatoes and all of my fingers were okay!  I put them all in a large bowl and used a knife to chop the basil.  I happened to have some fresh basil that I had frozen, and I used that since I didn’t have and freshly picked basil.  I would imagine that dried basil would work, but I really like the freshness of chopping the leaves yourself for a recipe like this.

I then chopped the garlic as small as I possibly could, and in hindsight realized a food processor would’ve made this much easier.  Usually, I love tons of garlic in my recipes and prefer to cut it in larger chunks.  For this, though, I felt like a large chunk of raw garlic would be overpowering and I wanted to make sure it would all blend together really well.  Next, mix the garlic and basil in with the tomatoes, add some salt and pepper, and you’re almost good to go.

Check on the water, which is hopefully boiling by now.  Cook your pasta for as long as you like (personally, I’m more of an al dente person) and be sure to strain it well.  Usually the excess pasta water is great in breaking up a pesto or creamy sauce, but the raw tomatoes are watery enough that you don’t want to add to that.  Mix the ricotta with the tomato mixture and try to mix it all up.  It doesn’t mix very well cold, but when you add the hot pasta it’ll all mix together nicely.  Go ahead and serve it once it’s all mixed together!  I really loved this dish as it was easy and quick to whip up after work and will definitely be making it again, even when the nice summery days come to an end.

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