This Roasted Tomato Basil Sauce is a bright luscious sauce packed with flavor and versatility! I added fresh cherry tomatoes and basil on top of individual servings for an added freshness. I chose to serve it over pasta but it is also great served by itself with a loaf of crusty bread and a glass of a crisp wine.
This last week was so much fun, to say the least. Robby had to go to L.A. for work and lucky me was able to tag along for the ride. We stayed at the Marriott in Marina del Rey with an awesome view of our old hometown. I have never seen the Westside from that perspective before; it was pretty cool! After we arrived, we freshened up and went to meet our longtime friends, Maggie, George, Christine and Jonny at a fairly new Italian inspired restaurant called Scopa. There was a lot of great conversation and laughter involved as usual!
I was really looking forward to the next day because I had made plans to meet up with Adam and Ryan who are fellow food bloggers from Husbands that Cook. We met in Venice at The Butcher’s Daughter for lunch and they were just as sweet as I imagined them to be. We had so much to talk about during the relatively short time we spent together. Unfortunately, we barely scratched the surface of all the things we wanted to learn about each other but that just gives us more reason to meet up again!
Later that day, I went to visit one of the old school Venice families who still hold down the old Venice vibe, which is slowly but surely disappearing! When I use to live down the street from the Massie’s, I would give Ms. Massie a back massage every time I stopped in. Well, this time was no different and I gave her one on this visit as well! It is always so great to see everyone! Robby had text me when he was off work and we decided to meet George at Charcoal Venice for dinner. My good friend Josiah is the owner/chef of Charcoal and he told me he was going to be working that night. The food was phenomenal; I highly suggest you try it if you are ever in the area. And there are surprisingly a lot of vegetarian options.
The next day my dad drove down to meet me for lunch. We ate at Cafe del Mar that happens to be a few buildings east of the Marriott. The food was really good and they had a great view of the Marina but that’s all I’m going to say about the restaurant. My dad left shortly after lunch and I went back to the hotel to meet my friend John for a glass of wine before heading to dinner at Cast and Plow with Robby’s coworkers. Cast and Plow is a restaurant at Ritz Carlton that also overlooks the Marina. I had a great time meeting and chatting with Robby’s coworkers!
I always make it a point to go to the 3rd St. Promenade to do a little shopping whenever I am in LA, so I snuck in some quick shopping the next morning before I met up with Maggie for lunch. We met at a wine bar called Local Kitchen and Winebar, which was located where Marty’s Liquor store use to be. Marty’s was in that location for almost 50 years, which was in the neighborhood I grew up in. This is the liquor store that Maggie and I managed to get beer from when we were teenagers! Haha.
After lunch with Maggie, I went to meet up with another friend Janelle. We met at her boyfriend’s furniture shop Stansbury where she also happens to work and we decided to go to a Spanish tapas restaurant down the street called Manchego for dinner. We shared 5 varieties of tapas along with a really nice bottle of Rueda Verdejo and we talked and talked and talked! This had to be one of the best times I have had in LA in a very long time!
4 – 6 Servings
- 7 Large Tomatoes – cored – cut into 1/2 inch thick rounds
- Marinade – recipe below
- 1/2 White Onion – diced
- 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1/3 Cup Dry White Wine – I used Sauvignon Blanc
- 3/4 Teaspoon Sea Salt – or to taste
- 1/4 Teaspoon Black Pepper
- 6 Cloves Garlic – minced
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons Fresh Thyme
- 1/2 Packed Cup Fresh Basil leaves – finely chopped
- 1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Dry White Wine
- 1 1/2 teaspoons of Sea Salt
- Cherry Tomatoes – room temperature – quartered
- Fresh Basil Leaves
Preheat oven to 325 F
In a bowl, mix together the garlic, thyme, basil, oil, wine and salt. On a large baking sheet or 2, lay out the tomatoes in a single layer and spread the marinade over the tomatoes.
Put the baking sheet on the middle rack and bake for approximately 45-55 minutes depending on the size of the tomato, the tomatoes will start to look a little shriveled up. The tomatoes will produce water and you will want to keep it.
Turn oven up to 400 F for 20 minutes to slightly caramelize the tomatoes. Keep an eye on them so they don’t burn, although a little brown is okay and they will have the roasted sweetness that gives these tomatoes the yummiest flavor!
While tomatoes are cooking saute the onions in the olive oil until soft. Add the wine and reduce until syrupy.
Set aside until tomatoes are finished cooking.
When tomatoes are finished cooking, let them cool and peel off the skins.
Put everything into a food processor or blender, including tomato water and puree. Pour back into the pan and simmer until it thickens up to desired consistency.
Drizzle a little olive oil over it.
While sauce is simmering, add pasta to a pot of salted and oiled water. Cook according to the package.
Mix a little sauce into the pasta then top individual servings with more sauce. Top with fresh cherry tomatoes, fresh basil and a drizzle of olive oil.
Tomatoes are great for the heart due to the extreme antioxidant support, niacin, folate and vitamin B6 that help the reduction of heart disease. They are also high in vitamins A, C, K and potassium. The choline in tomatoes helps assist the absorption of fat and reduces chronic inflammation. It also helps with sleep, muscle movement, learning and memory. Tomatoes are high in Lycopene the antioxidant that gives tomatoes their red color. Cooking tomatoes break down the cell walls, which helps to release the lycopene and is better absorbed by the body with a little bit of fat like olive oil. The Zeaxanthin in them helps to filter harmful ultra-violet rays, which protect eyes from “age-related macular disease.” They are also a powerful blood purifier and great for skin and bone health.
Fresh Basil has anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. The herb contains exceptionally high levels of beta-carotene and vitamin A and is rich in zeaxanthin an anti-oxidant that helps protect age-related macular disease. It has a good amount of Iron and also helps to detoxify the liver. It contains phytochemicals that may lower cortisol, a hormone secreted when you’re stressed that causes weight gain, so add some fresh basil to your water or tea.