The one perk of staying home with a sick kid is that while they sleep it off, you can get lots of fun stuff like cooking (yay) and laundry (boo!) out of the way. Thanks to M sleeping for a little over 3 hours yesterday, I was able to prep a some meals for the next couple of days. Tonight we had bow-tie pasta tossed in a spicy oven roasted tomato sauce with a roasted beet and shallot salad. The sauce is another recipe I borrowed from the Looneyspoons cookbook. It’s really a no-brainer, mess free recipe to make… I mean bacon, onion and garlic? how can you go wrong?! The extra sauce freezes really well, too.
Spicy Oven Roasted Tomato Sauce
2 lbs plum tomatoes, quartered
1 1/2 cups chopped red onion
4 slices bacon, chopped
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tbsp balsamic or red wine vinegar
1 1/2 tsp dried basil and dried oregano
2 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp each freshly ground pepper and crushed red pepper fkales
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan checese
Add tomatoes, onions, bacon and garlic to a roasting pan or oven-safe dish. Mix well and spread evenly in pan.
Roast, uncovered at 400F for 15 minutes. Remove pan from oven. Add vinegar, basil and oregano. Mix well and return pan to oven. Roast for 15 more minutes and remove from oven.
Allow to cool slightly then transfer roasted vegetable mixture to a blender or food processor.
Work in batches if necessary and puree until smooth.
Transfer mixture to a medium sauce pan. Add tomato paste, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Bring sauce to a boil then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered for 5 minutes. Serve over your choice of pasta!
Today’s Cooking Tip: Unused TomatoPaste
Ever wonder what to do with extra tomato paste when you only need a tablespoon or two in a recipe? Line a cookie tray with wax paper then dole out the left over tomato paste in 1 tbsp servings on the sheet. Place in freezer until paste is hardened then transfer into a ziplock bag and keep in the freezer. This way, everything is already measured out for you next time you need tomato paste and nothing goes to waste!
Roasted Beet Salad
I’m the only one who eats beets, but I love them so much that I’ll often roast up a bunch of beets (especially when on sale like this week. I bought them for $0,29/lb!) and make this salad up for the week.
2 lbs of beets, scrubbed and greens cut off
2 tbsp olive oil
1 shallot, thinly sliced
If beets are large, quarter them. Otherwise you can leave them whole. Toss the beets in 1 tbsp of olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Wrap the seasoned beets in aluminium foil and roast at 375F for about 1h15-1h30 until tender and the skins come off easily. Peeling the roasted beets is messy (expect some red fingers… it’s a badge of honour!) but pretty easy. If roasted long enough, the peel should just slip off.
Allow beets to cool and place them in a bowl.Throw in the sliced shallot, a little more olive oil, a dash or two of balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. This salad is also amazing served with goat cheese and nuts!