Welcome to my new blog and thank you for visiting. I decided to create this blog as a way to communicate with my friends and family through food. As a graduate from Natural Gourmet Institute’s Chef’s Training Program, I am often asked for recipes, specializing in, but not limited to, vegetarian cuisine. I thought this would be a way to share those recipes and expand my creativity in the kitchen. Thank you for visiting my blog and I will leave you with this recipe…
This sun-dried tomato sauce is one of my most asked for recipes. It’s inspired by my mother, a fantastic cook who hates the kitchen! She would make a version of this when I was growing up, but it has been adapted over the years. It’s easy to make ahead of time and delicious hot or room temperature. I will often prepare the sauce and set it aside until the pasta is done or I’m ready to serve the meal.
If you’re short on time you can always buy sun-dried tomatoes in oil and combine them with the garlic in a blender, but I find soaking the tomatoes on your own oil makes a rich sauce that is full of texture and noticeably less greasy.
For a final touch, I like to chiffonade basil and shave some parmesan with a vegetable peeler to garnish. To chiffonade, layer a few leaves of basil, roll them up, make a joke about that one time in college (just kidding mom!), and run your knife through to make thin ribbons.
Sun-dried Tomato Sauce
- 1/4 cup French green lentils
- 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 ounces sun-dried tomato paste or regular tomato paste
- 3/4 cup vegetable broth
- 1 pound of pasta of choice
- Basil for garnish
- Parmesan for garnish
- Cook the lentils: In a small pot on high heat, combine lentils with 1 1/2 cups of water – you could also use vegetable broth for a richer flavor. After the liquid comes to a boil, reduce heat to medium with the lid partially on for 20-25 minutes. Drain any excess liquid and set aside. I usually take lentils off the heat when I can easily mash a lentil between my thumb and index finger.
- While lentils are cooking soak the sun-dried tomatoes in warm water for about 15 minutes. Once they are tender, slice the tomatoes into about 1/4 inch pieces.
- On medium heat, combine the oil and garlic. Don’t allow the garlic to brown or it will become bitter.
- When the garlic becomes a toasty color, add the sun-dried tomatoes and the sun-dried tomato paste until all ingredients are incorporated.
- Slowly stir in the vegetable broth – the texture will become creamy.
- Simmer on low heat for 10-12 minutes.
- Add the cooked lentils to the sauce until well combined.
- Toss the sauce in your pasta of choice and garnish with basil and parmesan.
Note: It can be hard to find, but I love Amore Sun-Dried Tomato paste. When the grocery store doesn’t carry it I’ll just use regular tomato paste. I usually have luck at Stop & Shop and Whole Foods.