Growing tomatoes for canning and cooking purposes starts at selection. I plan very carefully for the garden , each year I have certain tomatoes grown for one reason or another. Taste, slicing, fresh salads which tend to be the cherry or grape tomatoes that have high yields and can be picked daily .
I find that I get easy salsa from firm tomatoes, mostly Roma or Early girl,while the big juicy tomatoes like brandy wine or beefsteak varieties even Cherokee purple and Amish paste give me the best sauce. Each tomato has a different flavor so a great way to select what you want to grow is heading to the farmers market and selecting at least one of each kind. Taste them, and get to know which is best for different cooking purposes. The tomatoes I used for this sauce were early varieties, very sweet, so I didn’t put much else into the sauce.
3-4lbs tomatoes, any variety you have on hand, skinned and cored
2 small onions chopped and minced
Five garlic cloves, minced
4 tablespoons fresh basil
2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
Extra virgin olive oil
* Dry Red Wine flavor, this is optional
To skin tomatoes, set up a pot with boil water while you are coring the tomatoes. Place carefully int the water and wait till the skin started to peal. Using a ladle take out tomatoes one by one and place in ice cold water till cool enough to handle. Simply peel skin off and chop. Set aside. Discard the water you used and rinse the pot.
Pour a few tablespoons of olive oil into pot, just barely enough to coat the bottom, we’re not drying anything here you just want the flavor. Add onions and garlic. Heat through but do not brown. Add in your tomatoes and seasonings. Heat through stirring for a couple minutes. Add in half a cup of wine if using and cook till mixture has thickened. About 10-15 minutes even more. Taste and adjust seasonings, pepper can be added along with more. Use sauce on favor pasta or let cool and use within 4 days.