Monday, June 19, 2006

Tomato Concasse

Another of Amalia's delicious dishes was handmade eggplant-fresh mozzarella ravioli with a "simple" sauce of tomato concasse. I put quotation marks around "simple" because I'm almost always too lazy to go through the process of making it when it's called for in a recipe. But if your sauce consists of nothing but tomato concasse, you may as well try it. It's creme de la tomato, all rich pulp, no seeds or peel.

Here's how it's done. Bring a small or medium pot of water to the boil. The level of water should be just high enough to totally cover the tomato(es). Score the blossom end of the tomato (opposite of the stem end) with an X. Once the water is at a full, rolling boil, drop the tomato(es) in for 10 seconds, no more. Scoop them out and run under cold water or drop into ice water. At the X you made, begin to peel the tomato skin off. This should now be very easy. If it is not, drop the tomato back into the boiling water. Once the peel is off, slice the tomato in half at the equator. Squeeze all the seeds out, the chop the pulp as you like. Music to chop pulp by: General Public "Hand to Mouth". Their 1980s ska-dipped new wave pop will leave you hungry for more. Add salt and pepper. Enjoy.


Blogger Ilva said...

This both sounds and looks good!

3:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

YUm! Looking as you said, simple and delicious!

10:25 AM  
Blogger a.c.t. said...

I keep saying that I'm going to have a go at making ravioli. That tomato sauce really is simple isn't it? I suppose if the tomatoes are the best and full of flavour then you don't really need many other ingredients. Looks delicious.

12:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Susan, reading about concasse has brought back memories of doing the grunt work in restaurant kitchens for evil chefs. When I got out of the biz, one of the very first thoughts I had was "I'll never have to blanch, peel and seed a tomato again! Everything is rustico from now on!"

But there is no question that a concasse provides a wonderful, delicate eating experience, and those ravs topped with it look fabulous.

4:54 PM  
Blogger ginkers said...

I always get hungry when I look at recipes like this and I know I really shouldnt. It's half past ten at night and a big plate of pasta should be the last thing on my mind. But still...

11:21 PM  
Blogger Corrie said...

this sounds good, and i've never tried it. also--back to the eggplant theme with the eggplant ravioli! all of this eggplant food inspired me to try baba ghanoush last week--yum!

great posts!

9:15 AM  
Blogger Susan in Italy said...

Hi Everybody, Amalia, the chef thanks you for your kind words!

a.c.t. You're right, this sauce is pretty easy, but I always go the "rustica" way (as Scott says) when it's called for in a larger recipe. Give it a shot with English tomatoes.

Scott, Are you preparing your own Kitchen Confidential?

Ginkers, I hear you. Another blogger posted about how food blogging makes you fat. She's so right. Maybe we should all try exercise blogging? No? ok.

Stelle, Baba ghanoush is an inspiration for me! It's easy and delicious, yet I haven't made it in years. Thanks for the reminder.

2:03 PM  

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