this slow roasted cherry tomato sauce is one of our favorite ways to eat pasta for the, oh, 10 months of the year when tomatoes aren’t very good. the magic of this recipe is that it takes the mostly flavorless little red circles in plastic clamshell boxes at the grocery store and transforms them into delicious, flavorful orbs of yum.
this process does take a little bit of advance planning as the magic transpires over the course of about 3 hours in the oven but it’s totally worth the wait and requires almost no effort on your part while it’s happening. in a nutshell, you sauté some onion and garlic, add basil, crushed red pepper, and more olive oil, then pour this over the tomatoes. three hours later, you boil some water for pasta then enjoy the best pasta with tomato sauce you’ve had since late last summer.
amazingly in the 4 years since i first tried this recipe, i’ve basically not changed it at all. (perhaps this is less amazing when you consider that the recipe source is an award-winning restaurant chef who collaborates with her husband on a cookbook and blog for home cooks…) this stands in stark contrast to my usual tendency to tinker and fiddle and swap and try adding this other thing.
the only thing i’ve really done is figure out the appropriate volumes of tomatoes and olive oil to use. the original recipe that i found was a little bit confusing with regards to how much of each of those we were supposed to use so the first time i made this, it was too oily for our taste. i’ve since figured out my favorite ratios and now reliably turn out delicious tomato sauce all fall/winter/spring long.