Every time I return from Italy the batteries are recharged when it comes to food, the one thing I always take away with me is “keeping it simple”. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I can spend ages looking through cookbooks and food magazines looking for something new and interesting to cook and then have to go shopping because I don’t have half of the ingredients. It was one of those days yesterday when I had nothing in the fridge except tomatoes, a couple of cloves of garlic, and a blooming basil plant on the windowsill, a simple pasta with home-made tomato sauce it was then! Everybody has their own way of making tomato sauce, this is mine:


what you need:

 – 500g tomatoes, I have to say there may be a recession but Superquinn’s tomatoes are still the best. I use a mix of their SQ superior Irish tomatoes and their Italian mix of 3 types of cherry tomatoes. Both are excellent and are perfect for making tomato sauce. Alternatively you can use a couple of cans of chopped tomatoes or cherry tomatoes, De Cecco are definitely the best but the Roma organic are aren’t bad either.

 – 1 clove of garlic peeled

 – 8 basil leaves

 – olive oil

 – 1/2 tsp sugar

– sea salt and black pepper

 – Parmesan cheese

 – pasta of your choice, my favourite is spaghetti


what to do:

 – fill the base of a pan with olive oil and cook your garlic until it is brown and remove, leave your oil cool down a little.

 – bring a pot of water to the boil, add salt and your pasta and cook until al dente.

 – add your tomatoes and cook for about 10-15 mins until sauce has thickened. If it gets too thick just add a little water.

 – season, add your sugar and basil and cook for a another 5 minutes.

 – drain your pasta, return to the pot and mix in your sauce.

 – serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and some fresh basil leaves.


buon appetito!