We had the pleasure of attending an event at the Seattle Art Museum which featured the critically acclaimed chef, restaurateur, award-winning author, and television personality, Mario Batali.
Those of you who are foodies will recognize the name Mario Batali as he has built an empire around his passion and respect for all of the great tastes and traditions of Italian cooking. He has a restaurant empire, several cookbooks, a line of food products and is currently on ABC's The Chew.
When first invited to this event which featured Italian food (aka food heavy in gluten and dairy) I pondered how I would ever survive the evening. But thanks to the wonderful staff at TASTE at the Seattle Art Museum, who prepared the meal using Mario's recipes, I was treated to an enjoyable dinner that was as good as, if not better, than everyone else's.
We were served Fenecchiedde - braised fennel salad; Strangolapreti alla Sorrentina - "priest stranglers" in the style of sorrento; and Artista alla Porchetta - roast pork loin and Brussels sprouts with pecorino and thyme.
If you are ever downtown Seattle and looking for a meal, I would highly recommend TASTE as a gluten-free friendly place to eat.
In celebration of a great evening, I decided to make pasta with Mario's basic red sauce. I contemplated converting his gnochi recipe to gluten free as well, but went with our favorite gluten free store bought pasta BiAglut Gluten-Free Penne Pasta.
Mario Batali's Basic Tomato Sauce
(naturally gluten free)
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 Spanish onion, 1/4-inch dice
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves, or 1 tablespoon dried
- 1/2 medium carrot, finely grated
- 2 (28-ounce) cans peeled whole tomatoes, crushed by hand (see note below re tomatoes)
- Whole basil leaves, for garnish
- Grated Parmesan, (optional)
In a 3-quart saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and cook until soft and light golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the thyme and carrot, and cook 5 minutes more, until the carrot is quite soft. Add the tomatoes and juice and bring to a boil, stirring often. Lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes until as thick as hot cereal. Season with salt and serve. This sauce holds 1 week in the refrigerator or up to 6 months in the freezer.
Serve with Gluten Free pasta and garnish with basil leaves and cheese.
Warning - once your family eats this, they will never go back to canned spaghetti sauce.
NOTE re Tomatoes - I love Pomi strained tomatoes. The packaging is BPA free (although they are not organic) but it is the taste I love - they remind me of my grandma's fresh from the farm jarred tomatoes. They add a great flavor to any recipe.
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