I know you guys are probably getting tired of all this ‘resourceful in the kitchen’ nonsense. You’re probably asking yourself, “Man, does this chick ever have food in her kitchen?”
Well, I do buy groceries, I promise, but without fail by the end of the week I’m scrounging. Oddly enough the meals I don’t plan to make often turn out the most blog worthy (go figure). But, I do have a personal mission to be as resourceful in the kitchen as possible. I want to be able to make something amazing out of a ridiculous hodgepodge of ingredients like it ‘aint no thang! What it really comes down to is I hate waste, I love creativity and can’t abide bad food. Simple really.
Last night, I almost didn’t pull it off. I was feeling creatively drained and since the beau’s birthday is tomorrow I knew I had a lot of cooking and baking ahead of me (not that that’s a hardship), so I was considering conserving my energy by ordering a pizza. But then I thought of dear Audrey in Sabrina, and I managed pulled this little number together.
Have you ever seen the movie Sabrina, the original with Audrey Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart? Well do remember the part where Sabrina somehow makes dinner for Linus out of maraschino cherries, stale crackers, tomato juice, puffed rice and sardines? Of course we never see the finished product, but I spent a large portion of my adolescence trying to figure what she could’ve concocted and I still have nothing. Anyway, for some reason that part of the movie stuck with me (clearly I was born to be a food nerd) and out of that simple scene my life long ambition to make something out of nothing took root.
So here is my riff on Marcella Hazan’s tomato sauce with butter and onion that has been floating around the blogisphere for sometime now. I of course ignored the simplistic beauty of the recipe by adding a bunch of other stuff (I always take things a step too far), but I was quite pleased with the results. My beau said it was his new favorite pasta sauce. I nodded and smiled stoically, while I did back flips of joy in my head! My love is a man of few words, so when I get a compliment I know he means it!
In the recipe they suggest you discard the onion, but why waste something so delicious. I served it atop the pasta, but I think placing it on garlic bread would be unbelievable as well. So many options, so little stomach space.
So, so yummy and relatively summer friendly!
Tomato Sauce with Tuna and Capers: Serves 4-6
1 can crushed tomatoes
5 tbsp salted butter
1 medium sized onion, peeled and halved
1 can flaked tuna, drained
2 tbsp capers, drained
1 zucchini, shredded
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
Zest of half a lemon
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
Splash of balsamic vinegar
Splash of balsamic
Fresh ground pepper
Place tomatoes, butter and onion in a heavy bottom pot over medium high heat.
Bring to a simmer and reduce heat to low and cook for 35 minutes.
Place shredded zucchini in a small bowl and toss with salt (the salt will extract moisture). Set aside for ten minutes.
Transfer the zucchini to cheesecloth and squeeze out excess moisture. Set Aside.
When the 35 minutes is up check the sauce. Remove onion.
Add sugar and balsamic and stir to combine.
Stir in tuna, zucchini, capers and lemon zest and cook for an additional ten minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in parsley.
Serve over cooked pasta of your choice (I used bucatini) and top with onion.
Serve with fresh parsley, ground pepper and a drizzle of balsamic.