12 July 2010

Thinkin’ tomatoes…

Happy Monday!

I find myself at the start of another working week after a wonderfully relaxing weekend.

And what better way to start the week than with a 5km run after work and a little Mystery Box motivation??

The chosen ingredient...




Did you know? Although they are synonymous with Italian cooking, tomatoes are actuallly native to South Amercia. They are rich is lycopene, an antioxidant which may improve the skin's ability to protect against harmful UV rays, and are also a great source of beta carotene and vitamin C. Apparently there are over 7000 varieties of tomatoes!

One dish immediately sprang to mind when I drew this ingredient......Spaghetti bolognaise.

There really is something special about this slow cooked sauce that is both rich and aromatic.

I was short on time to prepare this dish, and would have loved to have had a pot of the rich tomato sauce slowly simmering on the stove throughout the afternoon. However, when you are starting to cook your dinner at 6.30pm, a speedy sauce will have to do.

Starting with some veggies – onion, carrot and mushrooms.


Simmered with beef, garlic and the chopped tomatoes.


Along with a good amount of fresh thyme and basil.


And a splash of red wine, tomato paste and passata.


Simmered for 40 minutes, until the sauce had thickened.


Served atop a pile of GF spaghetti, with a sprinkle of parmesan…


And with a green salad alongside….


All together now…


And washed down with a glass of this delicious pear cider…


A wonderfully hearty start to the week. The sauce was tasty, but I suspect it would have been even better had there been extra time to really allow the flavours to develop.

What about you? What is your favourite tomato dish?

Happy Baking :)


  1. 1. that sauce looks AMAZING
    2. That pear cider is to die for

  2. great minds think alike! I just made that dish along with a huge salad. It was so good! Hit the spot. Yours of course looks amazing. I bet it was tsty with some cider. :)

  3. I love tomatoes in just about anything! :)

  4. Wow! That looks delicious, hon! So hearty. :)

  5. Caprese salad, and nothing but!

  6. <3 pear cider :) sooo good!!

    That pasta sauce looks fantastic!!

  7. I spent time as an exchange student in South Australia (a little town called Robe) and my host mother made her own unique spaghetti bolognaise in which she added a heaping helping of yellow curry powder to the sauce rather than typical italian herbs (although it does have some oregano in it.) Now, at this point, the classic italian flavor went out the door but what ended up on the plate was amazing! I sill make it occassionally and have fond memories of the land down under each time.

  8. mmm! Pear Cider! I've never tried that but I'm a huge cider fan.

    Tomato sauce would have to be my favorite tomato dish, by far!

  9. Good old tomatoes! I love putting them in mozzarella and basil salads. That pear cider sounds great!

  10. Yum! I will eat tomatoes in just about anything! Lately I've been making a lot of salsa. Yum!
    Pear cider looks good-I suspect I would only be able to drink one since it's probably really sweet...perfect for dinner!

  11. This is one of my favourite dishes, yiammmmm

    I never tried pear cider. I have to find it!

  12. in the summer i love eating tomatoes all on their own, or in tomato sandwiches :)

  13. MMMM! Gotta love fresh produce in the summer!

    Tomatoes make a killer homemade pizza sauce!

  14. I love spaghetti bolognese too! And I'm one of those people that thinks that you can't get a better one than a homemade one! :)

  15. Ohhh, I would have been very excited to pull out tomato! I love sauces, salsa, raw tomatoes in salad and as a topping on a sandwich..I could go on forever I think

  16. wow check out that color!! This looks fantastic!!

  17. This dish looks awesome! I'm intrigued by the pear cider in your last picture. I've never had one, but I think I want one!

  18. Where oh where did you get that pear cider?! I'd absolutely love to try that! :)

    Tomatoes are only just coming into my life having moved out, as my mum's allergic. I once had a really amazing tomato sorbet for dessert at a restaurant... :)

  19. I love tomatoes in wraps, salsa, salad, pizza, ketchup...I can't decide my favourite!

  20. Looks good, one of my families favourites. What brand g f spaghetti do you prefer?

  21. I love to put tomatoes in my veggie burger recipe. I also make a mean homemade pasta sauce, it's the only one we'll eat now. Goodbye jar sauce! I haven't had that in years.

  22. Pear cider??!! Where did you get that from?!