- 2 lbs. fresh, ripe plum tomatoes
- 5 Tbs. unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion, peeled and cut in half cross-wise
- salt, to taste
- 1 lb. penne, cooked according to package directions
- freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for serving
Tomato Sauce with Onion and Butter
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Vegetarian, Pasta, Family Favorites
Start to Finish:
Wash the tomatoes, cut them lengthwise in half, and put them in a covered saucepan. Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. Put them in batches in a food mill fitted with the disk with the largest holes (for thicker sauce) or the medium holes (for a thinner sauce) and purée.
Put the pureed tomatoes in a saucepan and add the butter, onion halves, and the salt to taste. Cook uncovered at a steady simmer for 45 minutes. Add additional salt if necessary. Discard the onion before serving.
While the sauce is simmering, cook the penne. Toss the penne with the sauce and serve immediately. Pass the Parmigiano-Reggiano at the table.
If you don't have a food mill, you can use a blender. When you remove the tomato halves from the hot water, peel off the skin and cut off the top of the tomato where the stem was. Puree the tomatoes in a blender until they are relatively smooth (this is not a very chunky sauce). If the seeds bother you, send the pureed mixture through a fine mesh sieve. I have a food mill but it is my least favorite appliance so I prefer to use the blender.
Plum tomatoes are often called roma tomatoes in the supermarket (roma tomatoes are actually a type of plum tomato) - they are oblong instead of round.