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Old 09-22-2008, 05:40 PM   #21
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First off - don't ever even dream of using supermarket tomatoes for a sauce & expect it to be flavorful. Peeling & seeding has nothing to do with it - the tomatoes have the flavor & consistancy of styrofoam, regardless of what they're called. Unless you have access to good garden or farmers market tomatoes & actually want to go to all the trouble of peeling & seeding them, just BUY good quality canned tomatoes. My favorites are imported Italian plum tomatoes in their own juice or puree. You need do nothing but open the can, & the flavor & consistency is wonderful.
I do have access to farmers market tomatoes, but I just wanted to try real tomatoes just to try it.

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Secondly - were you actually following a recipe, or just throwing things in willy-nilly? I ask because your description of what you did sounds sort of erratic.
I wasn't going by a set recipe. I was going on memory of how a cook did it in front of me. I really liked the way the sauce tasted and I wanted to replicate it.

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While there is TONS of room for leeway, cooking IS a sort of science. A science that is tons of fun & enjoyment & definitely not worth "quitting" just because things don't initially work out. But if things don't initially work out because you're cutting corners or not actually reading thru a recipe, I think you need to sit down & decide to develop a little patience. After just a couple of tries, claiming this to be your "last" attempt at making a red pasta sauce doesn't bode well for you trying & succeeding at something more challenging.
By "last attempt" I meant, the last time I tried to cook the sauce, which was last night. I do intend to try it again, this time with some changes to hopefully make it come out better. Overall, though, I did like it. It just wasn't as flavorful as I would have liked.

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Again - all I'm saying is - take a deep breath & don't be so impatient. Cooking is & should be FUN!!
I'm trying, I'm trying. sheesh!
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Old 09-22-2008, 06:16 PM   #22
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Okay - it was wording at play here. If you had said "latest" attempt at making red sauce, that would have described what you meant. "Last" frequently means just that - LAST, as in no more - lol!! That's where I was coming from.

If you want to try fresh tomatoes, than by all means do so. But just do it with garden &/or farmers market tomatoes. Supermarket tomatoes are bottom of the barrel as far as sauce goes. Unless you can go with local vine-ripened fresh, then go with good-quality canned. Frankly, that's what most high-end restaurants use.

For your next venture, I'd pick out a recipe that closely resembles what you remember being created in front of you. Just from memory is difficult. With the carrots alone - too few won't make a difference; too many will make it too sweet. You need to get a taste/feeling for the amounts, & a recipe as a starting point will help with that.
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Old 09-22-2008, 06:58 PM   #23
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San Marzano or whatever - get the best quality you can. If you use poor ingredients you will have a poor result. Don't cheap out. Whole or crushed, I think, is a personal preference. I've gotten the same results with both. And DaveSoMD, I don't know about you, but I've been burned before at a Farmer's Market. Check what you're going to buy first; ask for a taste. I learned the hard way a long time ago.
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Old 09-22-2008, 11:11 PM   #24
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San Marzano or whatever - get the best quality you can. If you use poor ingredients you will have a poor result. Don't cheap out. Whole or crushed, I think, is a personal preference. I've gotten the same results with both. And DaveSoMD, I don't know about you, but I've been burned before at a Farmer's Market. Check what you're going to buy first; ask for a taste. I learned the hard way a long time ago.
For canned tomatoes should I specifically look for pealed? Whether or not it's crushed or whole?
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Old 09-23-2008, 12:12 AM   #25
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I know a lot of Italians use beef stock in thier pompadoro sauce
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Old 09-23-2008, 06:06 AM   #26
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For canned tomatoes should I specifically look for pealed? Whether or not it's crushed or whole?
Yes. Actually I don't think I have seen them any other way.
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Old 09-23-2008, 06:09 AM   #27
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And DaveSoMD, I don't know about you, but I've been burned before at a Farmer's Market. Check what you're going to buy first; ask for a taste. I learned the hard way a long time ago.
True, we have some here that are really nothing but wholesalers that set up like they are "local". I always shop at the local Amish farmer's market, that way I know it is local and fresh.
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