I love to cook, and I especially love to cook without opening any of my shitload vast array of cookbooks. Sometimes I just get the urge to forget Martha Stewart et al and go for it in hopes that inspiration will be the name of the game; and today's attempt at innovation will be...ta dah!...a rustic marinara sauce.
It all begins with a going-soft collection of grape and cherry tomatoes that really need to be used and my urgent craving for a hit of pasta. Though I was aiming for 2 cup's worth of these colorful beauties, I didn't quite make it, but I am close.
The next dilemma is to determine what ingredients I have on hand to turn my tomato medley into a little piece of heaven. So, out to the garden I go to gather delicious smelling Italian parsley, basil, thyme and oregano. Olive oil, chicken stock, tomato paste, and a ton (note the technical term) of garlic next appear on the counter.
And here's where the fun begins: just throwing stuff (another technical term) into the pan, beginning with the olive oil and garlic, all added using the eye-ball method. After a short cook for the garlic, in go the tomatoes and, a bit later, the chicken stock. Reduction is now the name of this game, stirring and smashing tomatoes, as I watch the once round tomatoes break down into juice, skin, seeds and pulp. At this point salt, lots of it, joins the mixture.
My next task is to play with the consistency and taste of my developing creation, adding a little more of this and a pinch of that until it looks like the picture in my mind and tastes like I have imagined it might. All that is left is to cook/drain the pasta and put it all together in one big, glorious heap. Add a little garnish, and she's ready for her close-up, Mr. DeMille.
Yes, a winner! Please pass the Parmigiano-Reggiano and get the garlic bread out of the oven. Works for me...