Saturday, August 28, 2010

Garden to Table Challenge - Week Two

It's been a weird summer. No one's tomatoes are ripening yet, and I've only had a few compared to what I'm normally harvesting by this time of year.

But my Early Girls are finally starting to ripen, and I used a couple of them today in the recipe for Raw Spaghetti Sauce I'm posting for this week's Garden to Table Challenge post, along with some garlic and basil from the garden and a few other simple ingredients.

My sister in law made this sauce last week, and I had the pleasure of sampling it while I was out at her house last weekend. Raw food "concoctions" scare me - usually because they involve some version of avocado, my Most Hated Food. If I'm going to eat something raw, I'll take it in it's original form, thanks. But this sauce is different. It doesn't taste like health food, it's just really yummy, and happens to be really good for you too. No one can deny the benefits of raw vegetables, and this sauce makes it easy to eat a lot of them.

The recipe is from How We All Went Raw, a raw foods cookbook that I've had the pleasure of flipping through. If you're interested in adding more raw foods to your diet, I highly recommend checking it out - it's full of recipes for cooking all kinds of "normal" things, using raw ingredients instead of cooked.

Anyway, on to the recipe -

Raw Spaghetti Sauce
2 cloves garlic
2 vine-ripened tomatoes
1/2 c. sun dried tomatoes
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 c fresh basil
1/4 c fresh oregano
1 tsp sea salt

Put all the ingredients in a blender, and blend until smooth.

Now, if you're looking for a simmered-all-day, chock full of Italian sausage and pepperoni, hearty sort of sauce, clearly this is not it. Tossed with some homemade pasta, it's great for a light, summer evening meal though, with tons of flavor and not all the heavy ingredients in most spaghetti sauces. It's also really fantastic as a dip for bread, or maybe grilled cheese sandwiches.

Two things in my kitchen come as accepted fact. 1)I am incapable of following a recipe and 2) I will never have all of the ingredients a recipe requires. Based on those two facts, I made a few changes to the recipe. I used a couple of tablespoons of organic tomato paste instead of the sun dried tomatoes, because I didn't have any. I used a couple of teaspoons of dried oregano, because I killed my oregano plant. I thought the two cloves of garlic that I peeled looked kind of puny, so I used four cloves instead. When I make this again, I'll also add a chunk of onion and maybe half a bell pepper and see how it turns out. While I won't promise it'll work, I can't think of any reason this sauce wouldn't freeze well, making it a great 'convenience food'.

Happy cooking.... or, well, blending.


Wendy said...

ha ha! Your adjustments sound reasonable. I love the sound of this sauce. While there's a time and place for an all-day simmered sauce, I also love a fresh tomato sauce. I'll have to jot this simple one down.

Dani said...

We have TONS of ripe tomatoes!

meemsnyc said...

Yummy, sauce!!

Stevie from said...

Raw tomato sauce - what a great idea! I'll have to try this.

Julie said...

Wendy, Meemsnyc, Stevie - thanks for stopping by! Do let me know if y'all try it, I hope you enjoy it.
Dani - that's great! We had such a long, cool spring here, followed by 105 degree weather, with little in between, that everyone -in this area's- tomatoes are really late this year. Glad to know yours are doing so well!