roasted garden tomato sauce + white bean balls


 

Bridging the gap between all of our preferred dinner choices can sometimes be a difficult task. Even though we all like just about everything, there are distinct differences in what we want and when we want them. One thing we can always agree on is pasta. Especially when it is covered with tomatoes straight from the garden. Last night, that was exactly what was on the menu. As per usual, the boys suggested meatballs. There was a discussion. Then there was a denial. Substitutions were suggested. A compromise was reached. A recipe was born. A very tasty recipe.

Roasted Garden Tomato Sauce

*This recipe is definitely simple and adaptable.  You may use whatever tomatoes you like.  If using large tomatoes, just half them and remove and discard the skins after roasting.  We have a million yellow pear tomatoes, so I chopped our larger tomatoes to approximately the same size and didn't worry about trying to remove the skins. 

preheat oven to 450.
Tomatoes-as many  or as few as you would like. // kosher salt //freshly ground pepper // olive oil // sherry vinegar // 1-2 garlic cloves // basil for garnish

Place tomatoes and garlic cloves in a shallow baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil, and sherry vinegar.  ( You want to coat them but not drown them).  Sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper.  Place in the oven and roast until they are starting to caramelize and you can break them apart easily with a wooden spoon.  This took about 25 minutes for me, but if you are using larger tomatoes it can take up to an hour.  Remove from oven and set aside until pan is cool enough to handle.
Pour tomato mixture into a food processor and process until smooth.
Place in pan to reheat before serving.  If you sauce is on the thick side, you can add a tablespoon of water at a time until desired thickness is reached.  Adjust salt and pepper if necessary.


White Bean Balls

2 cans white beans, drained and rinsed // 3/4 cup bread crumbs // 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese // 1 egg //
1 tablespoon olive oil + more for pan frying // 1 teaspoon salt // 1 teaspoon paprika // 1 garlic clove, minced // handful of chopped parsley // 1/2 teaspoon oregano // pepper to taste

Place beans and garlic into food processor and pulse until beans are broken apart but not smooth.  Remove from processor and place in large bowl.  Add bread crumbs, Parmesan, olive oil, salt, paprika, parsley and pepper.  Mix with hands until just combined.
In a large heavy bottom sauce pan, place about an inch of oil. Over medium heat, bring the oil up to 350 degrees.  Using a tablespoon, scoop bean mixture, round it into balls and place them in the pan.  Make sure the balls have plenty of space (hehe).  Take care to turn them and brown on each side.  Remove to a paper towel to drain and repeat, working in batches.

After you are finished, you may return the balls to the sauce (this is what I did, but they did lose some of their crispiness) or you can place them on the pasta and top with sauce and basil leaves, which is probably what I will do next time.  Enjoy!

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