'ANGRY' PASTA SAUCE
Hot and spicy
make this tomato-based sauce
outstanding on spaghetti and meatballs!
8 lbs. (about 16 C.) Roma or plum tomatoes
½ C. extra-virgin olive oil
4 C. finely-diced yellow onions (about 2-3 big ones)
minced (that means chopped up really small) serrano chile peppers, or about 12
peppers (wear rubber gloves!); cut off stems and discard; mince and include the
whole pepper, including the seeds, because they add a lot of "fire")
cloves of garlic, minced (pull off the paper and discard with the bottom of
each curved clove, or section, before you mince)
12-oz. can tomato paste
3 T. sugar
2 T. kosher or sea salt
½ tsp. freshly-ground black pepper
1½ tsp. lemon juice or citric acid (Fruit Fresh) if you're canning this
Note: tomatoes and serrano peppers both
take about 2½ months from
planting to harvest, so plan ahead and
plant them in the spring together with some onions and garlic
to make this sauce with mostly your own
sauce is called "arrabbiata" because that's the word for "angry" in Italian!
It's called that because it tastes so hot, it's as if it is angry!
It's the chile
peppers in this recipe that makes this sauce so spicy. Serrano peppers look
like bright red green beans, but boy, do they pack a punch. They are a very hot
chile pepper. So for this recipe, make sure to have some rubber gloves on hand
to wear when you are chopping them. Otherwise, the chiles might make your hands
hurt if they come in contact with them.
will make six pint-sized jars of sauce. Usually, there are about four or five
servings per pint. So you can either can the extra, freeze it (leave about an
inch of extra "head space" in the jar because it'll expand), or share it right
away. It'll keep in the refrigerator for about two weeks.
To start, bring
a large pot of water to a boil. Break off the green stem of each tomato. With a
paring knife, cut out and throw away the cone-shaped core of each tomato. When
the water boils, carefully drop the tomatoes into the water and let them boil
for a minute. Then remove them with a slotted spoon or strainer, and plunge
into a big bowl of ice-cold water in the sink.
Why are you
doing this? To get the tomato skins to come off easily! This is called
"blanching." If you don't remove the tomato skins, they will roll up into chewy
little logs in your pasta sauce and you won't be happy.
So, once the
tomatoes in the ice water are cool enough for you to handle, simply strip off
the skins and throw them into your compost pile or wastebasket.
Chop them up on
a cutting board into about 8 pieces per tomato and put in a strainer to let the
extra juice run out. Set them aside for now.
Take a large
stockpot, and put the olive oil in it on medium-high heat. Add the onions and
saute (cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and fragrant, but
not brown. This takes about 5 minutes.
Now add the
minced serrano chiles and the garlic. Saute another couple of minutes. Add the
tomato paste, and stir for one full minute.
Add all the
tomatoes you prepared, along with the sugar, salt and pepper. Stir well. Bring
to a boil over medium-high, stirring occasionally so it doesn't stick. Once it
boils, reduce the heat to low, stir a few times, and let it simmer, covered,
for 30-45 minutes.
sauce is so spicy, you might want to let each person spoon on as much or as
little as they want on their spaghetti and meatballs, or other pasta.