If you are a sauce virgin read this article before you start. It is very important to ensure the food safety and longevity of your preserves…click here  This is a recipe, one of the very few that came from my domestic kitchen into my professional kitchen in 1981. It has changed over the years with the advent of soft fruit peelers, and where once, we used to score, blanche and peel the tomatoes we now use a soft fruit peeler…preferred brand Zyliss and we do, in honour of the tomato season and speed of process, buy a new one every year because 100 kilos of tomatoes is probably more than five times their intended use.

makes  approximately 2.5L
for larger batch quantities click here

350g brown onions, peeled weight, finely chopped
30g organic garlic, peeled weight, macerated with the salt
5g sea salt
10g black peppercorns, coarsely crushed…you may like to use a little less we like pepper
100g EV olive oil
2.5kg very ripe tomatoes, cored, peeled and roughly chopped
50g sugar…optional
2 bay leaves (fresh if possible)
100g-200g parmesan skins if you have some

50g Vine Valley White Wine Vinegar…optional

In a wide and shallow pan, sauté the onion, garlic and seasonings in the oil until they are lightly coloured and all rawness has been cooked out. Add the remaining ingredients, stir through and then cook gently on very low heat stirring from time to time until it is thick.


  • the sauce can be used fresh with pasta or gnocchi
  • the chunky sauce can be bottled in sterilized jars and as an extra safeguard further cooked in the sealed jars refer to the preserving bible and follow the instructions
  • the sauce can be puréed in a blender, Thermomix or MyCook and bottled refer to the preserving bible and follow the instructions
  • the sauce is the basic for many dishes from our kitchen


2.5kg – 5kg – 10kg tomatoes
500g – 1kg – 2kg onions p/w
50g – 100g – 200g garlic p/w
5g – 10g – 20g Maldon sea salt
10g – 20g – 40g black pepper….freshly and coarsely crushed
50g – 100g – 200g sugar…optional
50g – 100g – 200g Vine Valley white wine vinegar…optional
2 – 4 – 8 bay leaves…fresh if you can