It is farmers' market season.
There's all sorts of lovely stuff to be had on Saturdays downtown.
In between dealing with sizable piles of peaches and plums, I've been getting lots and lots of tomatoes.
And here's how I've been dealing with all the cheap heritage tomatoes:
Super Easy Summer Tomato Sauce
Basically, that's the tomato sauce in the picture above — it's a very simple recipe: eight or nine good tomatoes, some basil, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper.
First you dice the tomatoes, getting rid of any nasty spots, and making sure the tomato skin hunks are less than an inch square.
This is because you are cheating.
Properly you should have blanched the tomatoes, and peeled and seeded them, but life is too short to go around worrying about tomato skin — if you just make sure the hunks are small it really doesn't matter.
You'll also want about twenty fair-sized basil leaves, sliced into thin strips, so you might as well take care of that at the same time, and also some amount of garlic finely minced (I garlic-press it, but if you like to mince garlic with a knife, that works too.)
The tomatoes and basil will look like this:
So now you want a good heavy frying pan.
Add a really good-sized dollop of olive oil — I tend to be pretty generous here, and add maybe a quarter cup — but you can use your own judgement and go a lot lighter.
Now you are going to let the sauce cook down at a sort of high-medium heat until it starts looking like spaghetti sauce instead of a bunch of tomatoes.
This is a good time to put on a big pot of water for pasta, and maybe start getting a salad ready.
It will look like this as it cooks down:
I tend to end up very vampire-safe, but this is another place to adapt the recipe to your own tastes.
I also salt it lightly and pepper it heavily — pepper and tomatoes are lovely together.
Or if you plan to eat soon, you'll need to add the pasta to that hot water you started in order to have everything ready at once.
Then, right before serving, you add the basil you prepared earlier:
When you stir in the basil, the heat of the sauce will cook it quickly, perhaps two or three minutes.
Then it's done.
This lot made sufficient, but not excessive, sauce for four people.
The whole thing is really easy, it takes maybe an hour altogether, and is altogether yummy.