Recipe: My quick and easy Passata

I can never resist entering those Aladdin's caves otherwise known as Mediterranean supermarkets with all their spices, pittas and delicious seeded flat breads all piled up. Fridges filled with halloumi, feta, yogurt and olives.

So last week as I was driving around South London to a client's, I just had to stop and go explore a Turkish shop whose boxes of juicy red tomatoes caught my eye as I drove past. Needless to say I came out with fresh herbs, white aubergines, feta, halloumi, flat breads, olive oil and 5 kg of fresh tomatoes. Yes 5 kg of tomatoes.

So what to do with those kilos?

My quick and easy tomato sauce. My Mother always made her own tomato sauce using her North End Road purchases, I'd never had a tinned tomato before university. So I now like to replicate that with my own daughter, don't think my mother did it for any moral reason, just that that was how she'd always done it.


2 onions (red or white I used both)
6 cloves of garlic
About 6 tablespoons of good olive oil
5kg tomatoes
2 tablespoons of sugar
A handful of basil

Heat the olive oil then fry off the chopped garlic and onion until they're translucent and soft.

Then add the tomatoes and a splash of water. Once they're bubbling up add the sugar, seasoning and basil. Let the tomatoes simmer gently for about an hour or until they've broken up.

Turn off the heat and blend with an electric hand blender. Let them cool down then transfer to freezable boxes and keep in the freezer until such time you need them. I use this in stews, pasta dishes or if you add a little stock and some chilli oil you could have this as a delicious soup for lunch!

Enjoy and use up those tomatoes you have lying at the bottom of the fridge!