I’m not a lazy cook, but I’m also not opposed to a few shortcuts now and then. One shortcut that I use a lot is jarred pasta sauce. Because it’s easy! And if you buy the right brand, it tastes good too. Or, at least, good enough. (Sometimes good enough is good enough, you know? Especially after a long work day.) Making my own pasta sauce seemed like such a chore, I never bothered attempting it.
Well, I’m now fully aboard the homemade pasta sauce train. Homemade pasta sauce! What took me so long?! And the best part is, it’s really not as time-consuming as I thought it would be. Because I’m a big fan of roasting veggies, I decided to use roasted tomatoes as the base for vegetarian puttanesca sauce rather than making it on the stove. Not only does this make the sauce more flavorful, it also reduces the hands-on time for the recipe. Sure, opening a jar of sauce and heating it up in a saucepan is still quicker, but this sauce is worth the (short) wait.
You can use the roasted tomatoes as a base for just about any kind of pasta sauce–roast the tomatoes with the garlic, olive oil, vinegar, and salt and then once they’re roasted and pureed, stir in any additional ingredients. I’ve used this recipe to make a simple basil tomato sauce, but puttanesca is my favorite by far. It’s rare to find a vegetarian puttanesca sauce (most versions contain anchovies), so making it myself is kind of my only option. The olives almost lend a meatiness to the sauce–it’s substantive and hearty rather than weak and thin like many jarred sauces.
So I am finally convinced. Store-bought sauces are good, but nothing beats a homemade pasta sauce.Print
The secret to this vegetarian puttanesca sauce is roasting the tomatoes first.
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