From my summer read last year, I came across many delightful recipes that I noted to try. The book, Mediterranean Summer is an interesting read about David Shalleck’s life-changing culinary journey as chef on board the Serenity, the classic sailing yacht owned by one of Italy’s most prominent couples. His challenge was to prepare all meals for them and their guests with no repeats, using only local ingredients that reflects the flavor of each port all from the confines of the yacht’s galley while at sea.
Shalleck provided recipes of the meals he prepared and I found many of them quite interesting. I decided that my first recipe of his will be this simple Marinara recipe, which I can use a base for many meals. It turned out really good.
The pepper flakes added a nice element of heat although the subtle tang of anchovies goes very well with fish and seafood, the sauce in fact works with everything – including sausages.
The recipe makes 4 cups, go ahead and make a whole batch, transfer them in bottles and just store them in the fridge. It will keep for at least a month or so but trust me… it won’t last that long.
La Nostra Marinara
(adapted from the book The Mediterranean Summer by David Shalleck)
What You Need:
- 1/4 cup pure olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled, cut into 6 wedges, and the layers separated
- 3 large garlic cloves, peeled and light crushed
- 1 tablespoon roughly chopped anchovy fillet
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped Italian parsley
- Two 28-ounce cans whole peeled tomatoes, pureed with their liquid
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
- 1 ½ teaspoons fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
Here’s what you do:
- Heat the olive oil, onion, and garlic together in a nonreactive saucepan large enough to hold the tomato purée over medium-low heat.
- Cook, stirring from time to time, until the onion and garlic are soft but not browned, 8-10 minutes from when the onion starts to sizzle.
- Remove the onion and add the anchovy. Using a wooden spoon, mash the anchovy with the garlic so that they combine into a paste.
- Add the parsley, stir, and continue to cook for 30 seconds, and then add the tomato purée, oregano, hot pepper, salt and sugar.
- Adjust the heat to keep the sauce at a low, steady boil and cook, stirring from time to time to keep the sauce from burning on the bottom, until the sauce starts to thicken, 30-40 minutes.
- Check the seasoning and add oregano, hot pepper or salt to taste if needed. Makes about 4 cups.