Cristina Cooks: Summer Sauce Yields Approximately 1½ to 2 quarts

Cristina Cooks: Summer Sauce Yields Approximately 1½ to 2 quarts


  • 16 vine ripened medium to large round tomatoes
  • 2 medium yellow onions, peeled and sliced thin
  • 4 scallions chopped into small chunks, green parts too
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt and pepper
  • ½ teaspoons red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 8 basil leaves stacked on top of each other then rolled into a cigarette and sliced super thin, do this at the last minute just before you serve as a garnish on top of the pasta.


  1. Heat a large heavy sauce-pan on medium high heat for 2 minutes. Add the olive oil and swirl to cover the bottom of the pan. Immediately add the onions and scallions, cook for 10 to 12 minutes to bring out the juices and natural sugar in the onions. Add the tomatoes, salt, pepper. Add red pepper flakes if using. Mix everything together well, lower the heat to medium.
  2. Cover with a lid slightly ajar. Gently boil or simmer for 50 to 60 minutes to cook down most of the liquid from the tomatoes. Check every 15 minutes to make sure the tomatoes are not boiling to hard and that too much of the liquid is not evaporating. If the tomatoes have thickened before the 60 minutes are up turn off the stove and go to the next step. In blender add 3 cups of the tomato mixture and blend for 2 whole minutes. Pass the mixture through a chinois (Chinese cap) to remove the skin and seeds into a clean pot.
  3. Continue this process until all of the tomatoes have been blended and strained.
  4. Correct seasoning, add more salt and pepper if desired. Make sure to heat the sauce thoroughly until hot.
  5. Cook your favorite pasta according to package directions. One pound of pasta will serve 8 to 10.
  6. Mix 1 to 2 ladles of pasta sauce over your favorite cooked pasta, mix in the sauce gently. Add an extra helping of sauce over the top of each serving, add a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, and scatter with the thin slices of basil.

Canning 101

Materials Needed:

You need the right tools to get started. Canning supplies can be found at most hardware stores, big chain stores like Wal-Mart and even grocery stores. • Large canning pot and it comes with a metal insert to rest the jars on inside. • Wide-mouth funnel • Silicone scraper • Magnetic lid lifter • Jar lifter • Jar wrench • Glass Mason jars and they come with lids when you buy them Instructions:

  1. Fill canning pot about 2/3’s of the way with cold water and put in metal insert that comes with the canning pot. Place Mason Jars WITHOUT lids inside pot and bring everything to a boil. Boil jars for 20min to sterilize.
  2. In a separate shallow pot, heat tops and rings in water that is gently simmering.
  3. While water is coming to a boil prepare the vegetables or fruits you’d like to can. Be sure to prepare only as much food as needed to fill your canner at one time.
  4. Fill the sterilized Mason Jars with food using the Wide-Mouth Funnel allowing for 1 inch of space at the top.
  5. Wipe the tops of the jars using a clean cloth.
  6. Release trapped air bubbles with the back of the silicone scraper.
  7. Using the magnetic lid lifter, place lids on the jars being careful NOT to touch the lid and gently screw the ring on.
  8. Gently place the jar in the canner.
  9. Make sure the jars are covered by 1” of water.
  10. Cover the canner and bring to a full rolling boil. Times for boiling depend on your recipe so check the recipe for specific times.
  11. Use the jar lifter to pull jars out of canning pot- be careful they will be extremely hot.
  12. Place the jars onto a wire rack and allow to cool overnight.
  13. Test the seals by checking to see that the lids have pulled down and when you flick them you hear a dull ping.
  14. If the jar is not sealed correctly, place it in the fridge and eat it within the week.
  15. Store your canned goods in a cool, dry place.
Cristina Cooks Summer Sauce