Spicy Heirloom Tomato Sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe from Straight from the Earth: Irresistible Vegan Recipes for Everyone, Chronicle Books, 2014. Reprinted with permissions. This sauce was created for the authors' Seared Polenta recipe, but will also be delicious atop pasta, eggplant, or other seasonal vegetables.
Serves: 4
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil + more for the baking dish
  • 1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2½ tablespoons chopped garlic
  • ¾ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 6 lbs (2.7 kg) ripe heirloom tomatoes (quartered if you are not peeling them)*
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ cup (25 g) packed chopped fresh basil
  1. Heat the oil in a large, nonreactive pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until it softens but does not brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring frequently, another 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, cover the pot, and cook, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes are soft, about 10 minutes.
  2. Using a potato masher, mash the tomatoes to break up the chunks. Add the tomato paste and ½ teaspoon salt and simmer, uncovered, stirring frequently, until the sauce thickens to the desired consistency, 30 to 45 minutes.
  3. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Add the basil and simmer for 2 minutes more.
  4. Remove the pot from the heat. The sauce can be refrigerated, covered, for up to 1 week, and frozen for up to 1 year.
Peeling Tomatoes: Cut a small X in the bottom of each tomato. Fill a large bowl with ice and water and set aside. Fill a large pot with water and bring it to a boil over high heat. Add four or five tomatoes to the pot and cook until the skins begin to wrinkle and split, 30 to 90 seconds. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, transfer the tomatoes to the bowl of ice water. Let the water in the pot return to a boil, and continue blanching the remaining tomatoes in small batches. If the water in the bowl gets warm, add more ice. When the tomatoes are cool enough to handle, pull off the skins with your fingers; they should come off easily.
Recipe by Go Dairy Free at https://www.godairyfree.org/recipes/spicy-heirloom-tomato-sauce