We're definitely not a culinary blog, nor are we professional chefs by any means. What we are, though, are food lovers and amateur chefs who love to experiment in the kitchen and pretend that we run our own little trattoria at home.
This weekend we bought some cheese filled meatballs at a market, but were perplexed on how conquer the ever-mystical flavorful tomato sauce "a la nonna." So we decided to consult with our chef extraordinaire buddy Karly Siciliano, an American chef who has been living in Florence for almost a decade and has worked in some of the most tried and true kitchens in the city. Her advice for making a killer tomato sauce is simple and easy:
- Crush up two cloves of garlic and sauté with some olive oil on low heat to flavor it (don't let it burn!)
- Add tomatoes and let them cook down by half ... make sure it gets really thick! "that's the key," says Karly. TRUST.
- Add salt
- While it's cooking down, add whole parsley and bay leaves
- Add a little bit of finely chopped onions to cook with the sauce, but leave a tiny bit on the side to marinate with olive oil and lemon zest to add raw at the end
- Once it's been simmering for a while and it starts to look really thick, add the raw onions, a little bit of pepper, and voilà! Ready to mix with the meatballs and serve.
Like most meatball recipes and tomato sauces, they are even better the next day, so if you can resist, hold on to your tastebuds for 24 hours or so. Or make a double portion and have left overs the next day.