You need to try Mamma Agata’s tomato sauce recipe! It’s an authentic family recipe that’s easy and delicious! Check out more from our visit with Mamma Agata in Ravello (plus video) here. We’ve graciously been allowed to share with our readers Mamma Agata’s tomato sauce recipe, but you should also purchase her book. It has fantastic ways you can use this simple sauce, and dozens of other signature dishes like her lemon chicken and lemon cake. Her sauce is a base for many of our recipes at home as well. It’s just so good and simple!
You can order the book on Amazon, but it’s more fun to buy it in person at Mamma Agata’s. You can also order it directly on their website. It’s actually more cost effective and Chiara will sign your copy. Don’t forget to add an order of her tomatoes! They’re sweet and delicious, hand bottled each summer by the family. There are also other amazing items like their signature “Red Hell” Chili paste, honey, and now pastas. You can find them here, and they are shipped directly to you from Italy. We did our own taste test for the best tomatoes (see here). The closest thing we’ve found in the U.S. are these crushed tomatoes, but it’s still just not the same! If you don’t have cherry tomatoes to add, that’s okay. We often make this sauce in a pinch with no extra tomatoes and it’s still delicious!
For more ways to use this amazing pasta sauce, check out our easy eggplant parmesan, amazing vodka sauce, simple stuffed shells, spicy arrabbiata sauce, and ricotta gnocchi. Did you know that it’s important to match your pasta shape with the appropriate sauce? Check this out to learn how, and read our top 6 tips for making pasta like an Italian here.
- Add the olive oil, garlic and basil to a large saucepan. NOTE: When you add the olive oil, garlic and basil to the pan, do so all at the same time. Do not heat the oil first, then add the garlic and basil to the pan, but rather place all three ingredients into the pan at room temperature and then heat the pan.
- Heat the ingredients over a high flame to release the natural oils contained in the fresh garlic, greatly enhancing the flavors of the tomato sauce. Be careful not to allow the garlic to burn or the oil to smoke. If this happens, you must throw it out and start over. The garlic and oil should only be on the high flame for one to two minutes before proceeding to the next step.
- When the temperature of the oil begins to rise, add the tomato puree and fresh vine-ripened cherry tomatoes to the pan.
- Be careful not to burn yourself or let the oil or tomatoes slash on you. You should hear a nice sizzling sound and soon you’ll enjoy a wonderful aroma from the fragrant ingredients releasing their oils and combining to make this delicious homemade tomato sauce!
- Cook the sauce first over on a high flame just until the sauce begins to boil. Then, lower the flame to simmer the sauce covered for a total of thirty minutes (including the time it took to bring to a boil).
As soon as you add the Roma tomato puree to the pan, add the 10 vine-ripened cherry tomatoes to the pan as well to further enhance the flavor of your sauce. This is an important step and you will be amazed how wonderful the sauce tastes in the end!
We salt to taste.