I brought back a big string of garlic bulbs from our holiday in France recently – and now I’ve got to use them!
This recipe for Roasted Garlic, Tomato and Chilli Sauce is a great way to get started.
It’s perfect for freezing in batches, but I’ve used it in a midweek meal to accompany crispy-skin pan-fried chicken breast and green salad.
Very simple to make – just grab yourself some garlic.
Makes enough sauce for 4 people
1 ½ head garlic
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 large red onion, finely chopped
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
½ tsp hot sauce
2 tbsp dried Italian herbs (oregano, basil, thyme, rosemary)
400g can chopped tomatoes, with juice
1. Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas 4. Slice the tops off the garlic bulbs to expose the flesh. Lay the bulbs on a sheet of tin foil and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt. Warp tightly in the foil and cook in the oven for 1 hour, or until the garlic flesh is very soft and you can squeeze the flesh out of the skins like puree.
2. Add 2 tbsp olive oil to a large frying pan and gently cook the onion and chilli for 10-12 mins until very soft.
3. Add the tomato puree and balsamic vinegar and stir through.
4. Add the chopped tomatoes and their juice and a cup of water. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a very gentle simmer. Add the herbs and stir through.Cook for 45 mins.
5. Remove the garlic from the oven and, taking care not to burn yourself, take a sheet of kitchen towel and squeeze the soft garlic flesh into the tomato sauce. Continue to cook for a further 30 mins.
6. Remove from the heat and cool. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days or the freezer for 3 months. When ready to use, re-heat/de-frost and re-heat and use to dress pasta, chicken or pork – as I’ve done here with this pan-fried chicken breast, served with green salad and Parmesan new potatoes.