Sugo al Burro e Pomodoro (Butter and Tomato Sauce)
Both Marcella Hazan (Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking) and her son, Giuliano Hazan (The Classic Pasta Cookbook), have recipes for Sugo al Burro e Pomodoro (Butter and Tomato Sauce). It has been a family favorite of theirs for years. It’s Italian comfort food!
The flavor is pure and it’s a very simple sauce for pasta. I used spaghetti, but it would be a perfect sauce for gnocchi or homemade tortellini.
Giuliano calls for 2 pounds of peeled and seeded plum tomatoes or 3 cups peeled canned tomatoes. (Don’t use fresh tomatoes unless they are in season and flavorful. Canned is better this time of year.) I used a 28-ounce can of San Marzano tomatoes. I don’t mind seeing the tomato seeds in the finished sauce so I didn’t bother to seed them.
The recipe calls for a medium onion; my onion was huge, so I used just half of it instead of the whole thing. (Next time I may try using the whole onion, even if it is large.) Both Marcella and Giuliano suggest tossing the onion halves when the sauce is done. Bob was shocked; he enjoyed eating them!
Butter and Tomato Sauce (Sugo al Burro e Pomodoro)
(Adapted from the recipes in Marcella Hazan’s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking and Giuliano Hazan’s The Classic Pasta Cookbook)
Makes enough to sauce a pound of pasta
Serves 4 – 5 as a main course, 6 – 8 as a first course or side dish
2 pounds of peeled and seeded plum tomatoes, or 1 (28-oz) can of peeled canned tomatoes, and their juice
6 tablespoons butter
1 medium-sized onion, peeled and cut in half
Salt to taste (you won’t need much with canned tomatoes)
Cut the tomatoes into small pieces (Canned tomatoes are easily cut right in the pot with kitchen scissors.)
Put everything in a pan and simmer, uncovered, over low heat. Cook for about 40 minutes, until the tomatoes are reduced and you can see that the butter has separated out.
Toss with hot pasta and serve with Parmesan cheese to grate at the table.