This is a good alternative to a classic tomato and basil sauce. It has more texture and a more subtle, less tart flavour.Great with potato gnocchi, pasta, or any recipe that calls for a tomato-based sauce.
2 medium onions
3 sticks of celery
4-6 large cloves of garlic (depending on taste)
1.5 kg (3 lbs) ripe tomatoes, or equivalent in bottled or canned crushed tomatoes.
Extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper
25 basil leaves
If using fresh tomatoes, roughly chop them. Keep aside.
Coarsely chop the onions, carrot and celery (1-inch pieces). Put in a large pot with a good swirl of olive oil.
Add the tomatoes and cook on a medium flame for 30 minutes (when the carrots are cooked, switch off).
Pass through a food mill (not too fine). If you do not use a food mill, you'll have to skin the tomatoes before you cook them.
Add salt and pepper to taste, and the torn basil leaves. Add a swirl of raw oil when serving.