An article from the New York Times convinced me to try San Marzano peeled whole tomatoes to make Marinara sauce. These tomatoes from Italy’s Sarnese Nocerino Area, close to the famous Mount Vesuvius volcano, are sweeter and more flavorful than American ones. I tried their recipe, but couldn’t resist tweaking it to make it my own improved version. I found the ingredients at Trader Joe’s.
- 1 28-ounce can whole San Marzano tomatoes
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 7 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1/2 onion, finely chopped
- 8 crimini mushrooms, quartered and sliced
- A few shakes of crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- A few grinds black pepper
- 14 oz can artichoke hearts, drained and sliced.
Pour the can of tomatoes into a blender and blend a few seconds.
Heat the oil in a skillet until it shimmers. Add garlic, onion, seasonings and mushrooms. Fry until onions are soft and garlic is yellow. Stir in the artichoke hearts.
Stir in the pureed tomatoes. Swish the can with 1/4 cup water and swish in the blender, then stir into the tomato sauce.
Cover skillet and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Mix it with pasta or make it a day ahead for the next day’s pasta.
For Linguine with Prawns, I grilled the prawns, then mixed with sauce and pasta and grated a bit of Parmesan on top. You could also fry the prawns with the garlic and onion, then remove them while cooking the rest of the sauce, and add them in later.