I have a bunch of recipes bookmarked as “must try,” but with my sporadic memory, I hardly every get around to trying any of them. This simple Marcella Hazan’s tomato sauce with butter and onions has been floating around the blogosphere for a while now, garnering both rave reviews and people claiming it tastes like tomatoes mashed with butter. With reviews like that I had to give this sauce a try.
I finally remembered to pick up a can of San Marzanos, an essential ingredient for this three ingredient sauce. This sauce is one of the easiest pasta sauces I’ve ever made. An onion is peeled, halved then put in a pot with a can of whole peeled tomatoes and 5 tablespoons of butter. The whole thing is simmered for about 45 minutes and you’re done!
The result is lush, pure and perfect clinging to piping hot pasta. You can really taste the butter in the sauce, which I thought was a good thing. I can see how people think that this sauce isn’t flavourful enough, but I loved that you could taste the individual ingredients playing off each other. Sometimes food should just taste like the ingredients without a bunch of overpowering spices masking flavours.
I’m curious though, have any of you ever tried this sauce? What were your thoughts?
Tomato Sauce with Butter and Onions as found on Smitten Kitchen
Serves 4 as a main course; makes enough sauce to lightly coat most of a pound of spaghetti
28 ounces whole peeled tomatoes from a can (San Marzano, if you can find them)*
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium-sized yellow onion, peeled and halved
Salt to taste
Put the tomatoes, onion and butter in a heavy saucepan (it fit just right in a 3-quart) over medium heat. Bring the sauce to a simmer then lower the heat to keep the sauce at a slow, steady simmer for about 45 minutes, or until droplets of fat float free of the tomatoes. Stir occasionally, crushing the tomatoes against the side of the pot with a wooden spoon. Remove from heat, discard the onion, add salt to taste and keep warm while you prepare your pasta.
Serve with your favourite pasta shape.