Tomatoes are still selling at a low price though not at Rs. 8/kg. They are of good quality, and it is time to make tomato sauce for pasta or pizza. I used to buy pizza sauce, but I found the flavour too strong for my taste buds. It also distracted from the flavour of other ingredients. I browsed through several recipes for Italian tomato sauce, and I created a recipe which has the Italian punch but still Indian enough for us.
I have mixed the tomato sauce with elbow macaroni and processed cheese. Indians are not too fond of western cheeses; therefore, you will find only processed cheese dominating the market here. There are other varieties, but they are expensive and really not suited to our palate. If you are using this sauce as a topping for pizza, mozzarella or any other goat’s cheese can be used.
Tomato sauce with macaroni and cheese is a comfort food. The pasta offers energy from the carbohydrates, and the cheese, if used, boosts the protein. The tomatoes, of course, provide carotenes and folic acid. As I said, it is a comfort food, and it gives a satisfactory glow when a lunch box is opened and you find this filling it :).
- 4 large Tomatoes
- 1/3 C diced Garlic
- 2 medium Onions, diced
- 1 tsp Paprika Powder
- 1 tsp Pepper Powder
- 1 tsp Dried Oregano
- 1 tsp Dried Basil
- 2 tsp Salt, or to taste
- 2 T Vegetable Oil
- 4 C Elbow Macaroni
- 100 g Processed Cheese (optional)
- Chop the tomatoes. Pulse in a mixie or blender at speeds 1, 2, and 3 for 10 seconds each.
- Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok.
- When the oil is moderately hot, add the garlic. Fry till it begins to look dry. Do not brown the garlic.
- Add the onion. Stir and cook till the onions are translucent.
- Add the tomatoes and salt. Cook on low flame till it is reduced to half the volume. Add the dry ingredients (paprika, pepper, oregano, basil). Blend and continue to cook till the sauce is thick.
- While the sauce is getting ready, boil the macaroni as given in Bacon, Cheese, and Macaroni.
- Transfer the tomato sauce to a very large kadai or wok, and heat.
- When the sauce begins to boil, add the boiled macaroni and mix.
- Dice the cheese and add to the pasta, and mix.
- Serve immediately.
- It is very important not to overcook the garlic. The overfried garlic will ruin the flavour of the sauce.
- Cheese should be added just before serving. Otherwise it will melt and form thin ropes.
- The sauce can be kept in the refrigerator for a week if you wish to use it with any other dish.