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Spaghetti sauce recipe using fresh tomatoes from the garden

  • g

I have an abundance of fresh Roma tomatoes and thought of making spaghetti sauce with them.Anyone have any good recipes that they don't mind sharing? Also could it be put in the freezer for later use?

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  1. We frequently have linguine with a condiment of garlic and broccoli sauteed in olive oil, diced fresh tomatoes are added without being cooked, and topped with 'basilico fatto a brandelli' (fresh basil sliced in ribbons, I prefer to use Italian culinary terms rather than those from that other language). We were accustomed to include pine nuts before the prices became outrageous. More olive oil is added just after plating the pasta. My wife adds grated Parmigiano Reggiano to her servings.

    2 Replies
    1. re: ChiliDude

      Yes in the summer either chopped raw or roasted ,torn basil and garlic with course ground black pepper .Of course extra virgin olive oil and grated cheese I prefer Locatelli Romano . Then the add ons today I'm thinking anchovies .

      1. re: scunge

        My in-laws preferred Locatelli Romano. They lived in the Midwest, and would fly East to visit us and their grandkids. My mother-in-law got funny looks from airport personnel when asked to have her purse inspected. There was usually a recycled glass quart peperoncini jar filled with freshly grated Romano. This was more than 30 years ago before TSA was installed. She thought that we had relocated to another world where there were no people of Italian heritage.

        My wife prefers Parmigiano Reggiano as I previously stated, and it has to be grated a certain way for her satisfaction. Who am I to argue. I miei antenati non erano italiani (my ancestors were not Italian).

    2. A really simple and fresh tasting will be wonderful using the Romas you have in your garden. All you need are a few tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, 3 or 4 leaves of fresh basil, salt & pepper.

      Chop the tomatoes, chop the garlic. Heat the oil, add the chopped garlic, fry for a couple of minutes, toss in the chopped tomatoes, the basil and salt & pepper. Cook over medium high heat for about 5 minutes stirring a few times. That's it. Cook your pasta and serve with the sauce. I put the pasta water on to boil before I start the sauce, then throw the macaroni (into the boiling water) while the sauce is cooking. The sauce is done when the pasta is.

      You can certainly freeze the sauce if you like but you probably will want to eat immediately... with grated Romano or Parmigiano over top or not.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Gio

        I do basically the same as Gio... sometimes fresh tomatoes, sometimes ones I froze. The only difference is, I simmer the sauce for 20-30 minutes and I like to add a chunk of parmigiano reggiano rind while it simmers. The cheese rind adds great flavor/richness to the sauce.

      2. The fresh sauces that are recommended sound good. You can freeze the tomatoes, too. Just blanch them, peel (very easy after blanching), and cut in half. I squeeze most of the seeds out. Then just pop in freezer bags, seal, and ready for the freezer. Then, when you take them out to use, while they are semi-frozen, squish the bag to break them up.
        You can also cut them in half, and dry them, either in a dehydrator or on a cookie sheet in a low oven. I wouldn't use oil or any seasoning, except maybe a bit of salt to help draw out the water. Then season them as you use them.

        1. Saute onion and chopped peeled tomatoes until the tomatoes are lightly browned and the onion is tender. Reduce heat and add some chopped fresh basil, minced garlic (I prefer lots of garlic but you can use as much as you like) and a pinch of salt. Cook for about 5 minutes, then add a little sugar and some parsley or cilantro (leaves and stems) and simmer uncovered for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Be sure to stir it frequently. When it gets thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, take out the parsley/cilantro stems and set aside to cool. If a thinner sauce is preferred you can puree it once it's cooled. Refrigerate for a day or two before reheating and serving over pasta. Remember that, in serving Italian pasta with sauce, the pasta is the star of the show, not the sauce. But it's OK to sprinkle a little Parmesan cheese over each serving.

          1. Sweat minced onions in olive oil, add chopped tomatoes, pips and all,a splash of white wine, a good pinch of red pepper flakes, and some salt. If you have them and want to add them, quartered kalamata olives, capers, or roasted red peppers. As soon as it is hot, it is ready. I love it on pasta or for a quick casserole of grilled half inch slices of eggplant, dotted with fresh mozzarella. Top it with fresh basil. If you go the eggplant route, use lots of oil to do the onions and drop a clove or two (smashed) of garlic in there and use the oil on the slices of eggplant.

            1. Don't have a recipe, but if you start to have tomatoes up to your KNEES... my suggestion would be to freeze them for the future... or can. I'd just core, peel (with 30 sec or so dip in boiling water), chunk/crush, and into zip freezer bags... ideally, stored flat. From frozen, will be ready to do after sitting in a container of room temp water for maybe 20 minutes or so. Canning tomatoes is NOT hard to do either... and then you don't use up freezer space.

              2 Replies
              1. re: kseiverd

                You can skip the peeling step and save a lot of time. Just freeze them in their skins - they'll slip right off when the tomato thaws.

                1. re: 1POINT21GW

                  It depends on which end you want to save time. I just did 2 boxes of tomatoes, and I chose to blanch, skin, seed first. Then, when I want to use them, they can be added after a brief squishing in the bag. I chose to do it first, and spent the time on the processing end so that when I'm cooking, I don't have any further prep and can spend my time prepping something else.

              2. A favorite way to prepare Romas from the garden is to serve them where they almost resemble a salsa. Blanch and remove skins. Chop tomatoes into a small dice, add several cloves of finely chopped garlic, some salt, and some good evoo. WARM this all in a skillet for a very short while. You don't want to reduce or cook the tomatoes -- you just want to make them warm and heat them enough to warm/cook the garlic ever so slightly. Take your strained cooked pasta which is boiling hot, (use penne if you can) and mix the two together. Serve the pasta as is, with a drizzle of evoo ... OR ... top the dish with fresh basil, fresh cracked pepper, and even some Reggiano if you like. Excellent summer dish.

                1. With good roma tomatoes, I sometimes halve them and lay them out on a cookie sheet. along with a few whole garlic cloves. Drizzle with good evoo and salt and roast them in the oven at 400 for 10 minutes. Slice the garlic and toss with the roasted tomatoes. I sometimes add some chili flakes here but it's good tossed with pasta just the way it is. Enjoy your tomatoes!

                  1. Does all the above also apply to other varieties, i.e., non-Romas? I'm well over my knees, maybe to my waist in delicious tomatoes this year.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: pine time

                      Some are sweeter than others, it depends on your taste. Some may not have as much flesh, and have more "jelly" and seeds. They freeze the same. Sometimes when canning, if the tomatoes are very sweet, I'll add a bit of lemon juice. But, I prefer to freeze them these days.

                      1. re: wyogal

                        Thanks. Mine are quite sweet, but watery. I'll try freezing some, after draining 'em well. Appreciate the help.

                        1. re: pine time

                          But, don't remove all the seeds/pips! That's where all the flavor lives.
                          I just peel 'em and freeze whole.

                      2. re: pine time

                        I have a garden full of "sandwich" tomatoes as well. High water content, but totally yummy. I made a pot of tomato sauce for the freezer last weekend. I used 3 lbs of peeled tomatoes, 1/2 cup each finely diced onions, carrots, & celery, several cloves of chopped garlic, a pinch of red pepper flakes, a bit of dried oregano and a little dry white wine. I slowly softened the veggies in olive oil, added the garlic, chiles and oregano, then added about 1/2 cup of wine to reduce. I chopped the 'maters, added them to the pot, and simmered for 30-45 minutes.The sauce had a beautiful fresh taste, even after the simmer. I actually used some last night for dinner. I sauteed some italian sausage & shrimp, added it to the sauce & served it over spaghetti. One last flourish with some chopped basil and it was perfect.

                      3. If it's not too hot for the oven you could try the Barefoot Contessa's roasted plum tomatoes


                        1. when it's super-hot outside, i just cut up the tomatoes and basil and put them in the serving bowl with some olive oil salt and pepper. wrap the bowl in plastic and let it sit at room temp several hours til dinner.

                          then just cook the pasta, drain and toss in the marinated tomatoes.

                          1 Reply
                          1. You have plenty of great cooking suggestions here already. I'll just add that I put a small amount of fish sauce in my tomato sauces, so little that no one would realize it, as the flavor boost is subtle but great.

                            I recommend removing the peels. And completed sauce freezes just fine.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Bada Bing

                              I just finished processing some fresh garden ripened tomatoes for my wife so that she can make her favorite tomato soup. The process is time consuming. Your suggestion about peeling the tomatoes prompted me to post this message. But altho we shared some tomatoes with friends and family, it was necessary to do something with our abundance rather than toss them out.