1 Hour, or More Depending on Preferred Texture; Enough for Pasta for 2 with Leftovers
Spoon Full Farm shares several loves with Coldplay. 1: Tomato sauce. 2: The color yellow. 3: Making music long after everyone has told us to stop. 4: Saying “fennel fronds.”
-8 taxi tomatoes, stemmed and cut into quarters
-3 sweet peppers, seeded and cut into thin strips
-2 fennel bulbs, cut lengthwise across the stems until you reach the thin green stalks
-3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
-3 cloves garlic, minced
-3 scallions, cut into thin rings
-A hefty handful of fennel fronds, minced as a garnish
-A handful of basil, chiffonade
-Salt and pepper to taste
Bring the tomatoes to a simmer in a saucepan. When you notice the skins and flesh separate from one another, decide: do you want to go chunky, or smooth? If the former is your choice, skip the next step.
Set a fine colander or sieve over a large bowl. Pour in the tomatoes and press as much of the juice out as possible. A good ol’ wooden spoon does pretty well. Save the skins and seeds for other tomato adventures; for example, we use them to flavor stocks. Return the juice to the saucepan.
Whether chunky or smooth, continue simmering, occasionally stirring, and squishing the tomatoes until they reach your desired consistency. Meanwhile…
In a skillet over medium-low heat, sweat the peppers, fennel bulbs, garlic, half of the scallions, and a few pinches of salt. Stir frequently, until veggies are soft.
When are the tomatoes ready? You’ll know when the tomatoes are ready. When the tomatoes are ready, stir in the skillet veggies, tasting and adding salt as needed.
When you are ready for service, toss with your favorite pasta, adding the fennel fronds, basil, remaining scallions, a few grinds of pepper, and a finishing drizzle of olive oil.