Tomato sauce
Overview
 
A tomato sauce is any of a very large number of sauce
Sauce
In cooking, a sauce is liquid, creaming or semi-solid food served on or used in preparing other foods. Sauces are not normally consumed by themselves; they add flavor, moisture, and visual appeal to another dish. Sauce is a French word taken from the Latin salsus, meaning salted...

s made primarily from tomato
Tomato
The word "tomato" may refer to the plant or the edible, typically red, fruit which it bears. Originating in South America, the tomato was spread around the world following the Spanish colonization of the Americas, and its many varieties are now widely grown, often in greenhouses in cooler...

es, usually to be served as part of a dish
Dish (food)
A dish in gastronomy is a specific food preparation, a "distinct article or variety of food", with cooking finished, and ready to eat, or be served.A "dish" may be served on dishware, or may be eaten out of hand; but breads are generally not called "dishes"....

 (rather than as a condiment
Condiment
A condiment is an edible substance, such as sauce or seasoning, added to food to impart a particular flavor, enhance its flavor, or in some cultures, to complement the dish. Many condiments are available packaged in single-serving sachets , like mustard or ketchup, particularly when supplied with...

). Tomato sauces are common for meat
Meat
Meat is animal flesh that is used as food. Most often, this means the skeletal muscle and associated fat and other tissues, but it may also describe other edible tissues such as organs and offal...

 and vegetable
Vegetable
The noun vegetable usually means an edible plant or part of a plant other than a sweet fruit or seed. This typically means the leaf, stem, or root of a plant....

s, but they are perhaps best known as sauces for pasta
Pasta
Pasta is a staple food of traditional Italian cuisine, now of worldwide renown. It takes the form of unleavened dough, made in Italy, mostly of durum wheat , water and sometimes eggs. Pasta comes in a variety of different shapes that serve for both decoration and to act as a carrier for the...

 dishes.

Tomatoes have a rich flavour, high liquid content, very soft flesh which breaks down easily, and the right composition to thicken into a sauce when they are cooked (without the need of thickeners like roux
Roux
Roux is a cooked mixture of wheat flour and fat, traditionally butter. It is the thickening agent of three of the mother sauces of classical French cooking: sauce béchamel, sauce velouté and sauce espagnole. Clarified butter, vegetable oils, or lard are commonly used fats. It is used as a...

).
Encyclopedia
A tomato sauce is any of a very large number of sauce
Sauce
In cooking, a sauce is liquid, creaming or semi-solid food served on or used in preparing other foods. Sauces are not normally consumed by themselves; they add flavor, moisture, and visual appeal to another dish. Sauce is a French word taken from the Latin salsus, meaning salted...

s made primarily from tomato
Tomato
The word "tomato" may refer to the plant or the edible, typically red, fruit which it bears. Originating in South America, the tomato was spread around the world following the Spanish colonization of the Americas, and its many varieties are now widely grown, often in greenhouses in cooler...

es, usually to be served as part of a dish
Dish (food)
A dish in gastronomy is a specific food preparation, a "distinct article or variety of food", with cooking finished, and ready to eat, or be served.A "dish" may be served on dishware, or may be eaten out of hand; but breads are generally not called "dishes"....

 (rather than as a condiment
Condiment
A condiment is an edible substance, such as sauce or seasoning, added to food to impart a particular flavor, enhance its flavor, or in some cultures, to complement the dish. Many condiments are available packaged in single-serving sachets , like mustard or ketchup, particularly when supplied with...

). Tomato sauces are common for meat
Meat
Meat is animal flesh that is used as food. Most often, this means the skeletal muscle and associated fat and other tissues, but it may also describe other edible tissues such as organs and offal...

 and vegetable
Vegetable
The noun vegetable usually means an edible plant or part of a plant other than a sweet fruit or seed. This typically means the leaf, stem, or root of a plant....

s, but they are perhaps best known as sauces for pasta
Pasta
Pasta is a staple food of traditional Italian cuisine, now of worldwide renown. It takes the form of unleavened dough, made in Italy, mostly of durum wheat , water and sometimes eggs. Pasta comes in a variety of different shapes that serve for both decoration and to act as a carrier for the...

 dishes.

Tomatoes have a rich flavour, high liquid content, very soft flesh which breaks down easily, and the right composition to thicken into a sauce when they are cooked (without the need of thickeners like roux
Roux
Roux is a cooked mixture of wheat flour and fat, traditionally butter. It is the thickening agent of three of the mother sauces of classical French cooking: sauce béchamel, sauce velouté and sauce espagnole. Clarified butter, vegetable oils, or lard are commonly used fats. It is used as a...

). All of these qualities make them ideal for simple and appealing sauces. The simplest tomato sauces consist just of chopped tomato flesh (with the skins and seeds optionally removed), cooked in a little olive oil
Olive oil
Olive oil is an oil obtained from the olive , a traditional tree crop of the Mediterranean Basin. It is commonly used in cooking, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and soaps and as a fuel for traditional oil lamps...

 and simmered
Simmering
Simmering is a food preparation technique in which foods are cooked in hot liquids kept at or just below the boiling point of water , but higher than poaching temperature...

 until it loses its raw flavour, and seasoned with salt
Salt
In chemistry, salts are ionic compounds that result from the neutralization reaction of an acid and a base. They are composed of cations and anions so that the product is electrically neutral...

.

Water (or another, more flavourful liquid such as stock
Stock (food)
Stock is a flavoured water preparation. It forms the basis of many dishes, particularly soups and sauces.- Preparation :Stock is made by simmering various ingredients in water, including some or all of the following...

 or wine
Wine
Wine is an alcoholic beverage, made of fermented fruit juice, usually from grapes. The natural chemical balance of grapes lets them ferment without the addition of sugars, acids, enzymes, or other nutrients. Grape wine is produced by fermenting crushed grapes using various types of yeast. Yeast...

) is sometimes added to keep it from drying out too much. Onion
Onion
The onion , also known as the bulb onion, common onion and garden onion, is the most widely cultivated species of the genus Allium. The genus Allium also contains a number of other species variously referred to as onions and cultivated for food, such as the Japanese bunching onion The onion...

 and garlic
Garlic
Allium sativum, commonly known as garlic, is a species in the onion genus, Allium. Its close relatives include the onion, shallot, leek, chive, and rakkyo. Dating back over 6,000 years, garlic is native to central Asia, and has long been a staple in the Mediterranean region, as well as a frequent...

 are almost always sweated
Sweating (cooking)
Sweating in cooking is the gentle heating of coarsely cut vegetables in a little oil or butter, with frequent stirring and turning to ensure that any emitted liquid will evaporate. Sweating usually results in tender, sometimes translucent, pieces. Sweating is often a preliminary to further cooking...

 or sautéed
Sautéing
Sautéing is a method of cooking food, that uses a small amount of fat in a shallow pan over relatively high heat. Ingredients are usually cut into pieces or thinly sliced to facilitate fast cooking. The primary mode of heat transfer during sautéing is conduction between the pan and the food being...

 at the beginning before the tomato is added. Other seasonings typically include basil
Basil
Basil, or Sweet Basil, is a common name for the culinary herb Ocimum basilicum , of the family Lamiaceae , sometimes known as Saint Joseph's Wort in some English-speaking countries....

, oregano
Oregano
Oregano – scientifically named Origanum vulgare by Carolus Linnaeus – is a common species of Origanum, a genus of the mint family . It is native to warm-temperate western and southwestern Eurasia and the Mediterranean region.Oregano is a perennial herb, growing from 20–80 cm tall,...

, parsley
Parsley
Parsley is a species of Petroselinum in the family Apiaceae, native to the central Mediterranean region , naturalized elsewhere in Europe, and widely cultivated as an herb, a spice and a vegetable.- Description :Garden parsley is a bright green hairless biennial herbaceous plant in temperate...

, and possibly some spicy red pepper
Capsicum
Capsicum is a genus of flowering plants in the nightshade family, Solanaceae. Its species are native to the Americas where they have been cultivated for thousands of years, but they are now also cultivated worldwide, used as spices, vegetables, and medicines - and have become are a key element in...

 or black pepper
Black pepper
Black pepper is a flowering vine in the family Piperaceae, cultivated for its fruit, which is usually dried and used as a spice and seasoning. The fruit, known as a peppercorn when dried, is approximately in diameter, dark red when fully mature, and, like all drupes, contains a single seed...

. Ground or chopped meat is also common.

In countries such as Australia, NZ, south Africa and the UK, the term 'tomato sauce' is used to describe a condiment similar to that known in the USA as 'ketchup
Ketchup
Ketchup is a sweet-and-tangy condiment typically made from tomatoes, vinegar, sugar or high-fructose corn syrup and an assortment of...

'. In Britain, both terms are used for the condiment.

The use of tomato sauce with pasta appears for the first time in the Italian cookbook L'Apicio moderno, by Roman chef Francesco Leonardi
Francesco Leonardi (chef)
Francesco Leonardiwas an Italian chef. Born in Rome, active in the 18th century in several European countries, he concluded his career as chef of Empress Catherine II of Russia. Back to Rome, he wrote the cookbook L'Apicio moderno, in six volumes, first edited in 1790...

, edited in 1790.

French

The sauce tomate of classical French cooking, as codified by Auguste Escoffier
Auguste Escoffier
Georges Auguste Escoffier was a French chef, restaurateur and culinary writer who popularized and updated traditional French cooking methods. He is a legendary figure among chefs and gourmands, and was one of the most important leaders in the development of modern French cuisine...

, consists of salt belly of pork
Salt pork
Salt pork or white bacon is salt-cured pork. It is prepared from one of three primal cuts: pork side, pork belly, or fatback. Depending on the cut, respectively, salt pork may be lean, streaky or entirely fatty. Made from the same cuts as bacon, salt pork resembles uncut slab bacon, but is...

, onions, bay leaves, thyme, tomato purée or fresh tomatoes, roux, garlic, salt, sugar, and pepper. Many times, butter and flour will be listed in the ingredients, but those are only used to make the roux (thickening agent). Roux is made of equal parts by weight of flour and butter. Any extra flour or butter that is called for in the recipe is typically an error.

New Zealand and Australia

The most common use of the term tomato sauce in New Zealand and Australia is to describe a commercially produced condiment similar to American ketchup.

Italian

The misconception that the tomato has been central to Italian cuisine
Italian cuisine
Italian cuisine has developed through centuries of social and political changes, with roots as far back as the 4th century BCE. Italian cuisine in itself takes heavy influences, including Etruscan, ancient Greek, ancient Roman, Byzantine, Jewish and Arab cuisines...

 since its introduction from the Americas
Americas
The Americas, or America , are lands in the Western hemisphere, also known as the New World. In English, the plural form the Americas is often used to refer to the landmasses of North America and South America with their associated islands and regions, while the singular form America is primarily...

 is often repeated. Though the tomato was introduced from the Spanish New World to European botanists in the 16th century, tomato sauce made a relatively late entry in Italian cuisine: in Antonio Latini
Antonio Latini
Antonio Latini was a steward of Cardinal Antonio Barberini, cardinal-nephew of Pope Urban VIII in Rome and subsequently to Don Stefano Carillo Salcedo, first minister to the Spanish viceroy of Naples. Born in Collamato, now a frazione of the town of Fabriano], in the province of Ancona, his...

's cookbook Lo scalco alla moderna (Naples, 1692). Latini, not unsurprisingly, was chef to the Spanish viceroy of Naples, and one of his tomato recipes is for sauce alla spagnuola, "in the Spanish style." The use of tomato sauce with pasta appears for the first time in the Italian cookbook L'Apicio moderno, by Roman chef Francesco Leonardi
Francesco Leonardi (chef)
Francesco Leonardiwas an Italian chef. Born in Rome, active in the 18th century in several European countries, he concluded his career as chef of Empress Catherine II of Russia. Back to Rome, he wrote the cookbook L'Apicio moderno, in six volumes, first edited in 1790...

, edited in 1790. Outside Italy, the role of tomato sauce in Italian cuisine has been quite exaggerated: many people know little of Italian cuisine beyond pasta with tomato sauce and pizza, but in fact countless other varieties of pasta sauce exist.

Italian varieties of tomato sauce range from puttanesca sauce, seasoned with anchovies
Anchovy
Anchovies are a family of small, common salt-water forage fish. There are 144 species in 17 genera, found in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans. Anchovies are usually classified as an oily fish.-Description:...

, caper
Caper
Capparis spinosa, the caper bush, is a perennial winter-deciduous species that bears rounded, fleshy leaves and large white to pinkish-white flowers. A caper is also the pickled bud of this plant...

s, garlic, chili pepper
Chili pepper
Chili pepper is the fruit of plants from the genus Capsicum, members of the nightshade family, Solanaceae. The term in British English and in Australia, New Zealand, India, Malaysia and other Asian countries is just chilli without pepper.Chili peppers originated in the Americas...

s and black olive
Olive
The olive , Olea europaea), is a species of a small tree in the family Oleaceae, native to the coastal areas of the eastern Mediterranean Basin as well as northern Iran at the south end of the Caspian Sea.Its fruit, also called the olive, is of major agricultural importance in the...

s, to Bolognese sauce
Bolognese sauce
Bolognese sauce is a meat-based sauce for pasta originating in Bologna, Italy. It is traditionally used to dress tagliatelle and is one of the two sauces used to prepare "lasagne alla Bolognese"...

, a predominantly minced- or ground- meat sauce which normally contains a small amount of tomato.

Mexican

Tomato sauce was an ancient condiment in Aztec
Aztec
The Aztec people were certain ethnic groups of central Mexico, particularly those groups who spoke the Nahuatl language and who dominated large parts of Mesoamerica in the 14th, 15th and 16th centuries, a period referred to as the late post-classic period in Mesoamerican chronology.Aztec is the...

 food. The first western person to write of what may have been a tomato sauce was Bernardino de Sahagún
Bernardino de Sahagún
Bernardino de Sahagún was a Franciscan friar, missionary priest and pioneering ethnographer who participated in the Catholic evangelization of colonial New Spain . Born in Sahagún, Spain, in 1499, he journeyed to New Spain in 1529, and spent more than 50 years conducting interviews regarding Aztec...

, who made note of a prepared sauce that was offered for sale in the markets of Tenochtitlan (Mexico City
Mexico City
Mexico City is the Federal District , capital of Mexico and seat of the federal powers of the Mexican Union. It is a federal entity within Mexico which is not part of any one of the 31 Mexican states but belongs to the federation as a whole...

 today). Then, Spaniards brought the use of tomato to Europe.

Basic Mexican tomato sauces are tomato sauce (salsa de tomate rojo o jitomate) and green sauce
Green Sauce
Green sauce is the name of several different sauces containing mainly herbs, namely the Italian salsa verde, the French sauce verte, the Spanish salsa verde and the German Grüne Soße or Frankfurter Grie Soß .- History :...

 (salsa de tomate verde). The tomato sauce is stock for spicy sauces and moles
Mole (sauce)
Mole is the generic name for a number of sauces used in Mexican cuisine, as well as for dishes based on these sauces...

.

United States

In most of the U.S., "tomato sauce" refers to a tomato concentrate with salt, herbs and small amounts of spices and often flavored with meat or seafood. It is sold in bottles and cans. This product is considered incomplete and not normally used as it is. Instead, it is used as a base for almost any food which needs a lot of tomato flavor, including versions of many of the sauces described on this page. Tomato purée
Tomato purée
The definitions of tomato purée vary from country to country. In the USA, tomato purée is a processed food product, usually consisting of only tomatoes, but can also be found in seasoned form...

 and tomato paste
Tomato paste
Tomato paste is a thick paste that is made by cooking tomatoes for several hours to reduce moisture, straining them to remove the seeds and skin, and cooking them again to reduce them to a thick, rich concentrate...

 have FDA standards of identity (since 1939) for percentage of tomato solids, and generally do not contain seasonings other than salt; tomato sauce is nonstandardized.

Marinara sauce
Marinara Sauce
Marinara sauce is a southern Italian tomato sauce usually made with tomatoes, garlic, herbs , and onion. However, there are many variations. Some of these include the addition of capers, olives, anchovies, and/or spices....

is an Italian-American term for a simple tomato sauce with herbs—mostly parsley and basil—but, contrary to its name (which is Italian for "sailor-style") without anchovies, fish, or seafood. In Italy, marinara refers to a seafood-based sauce or food and does not imply that tomato is either included or excluded.

Some Italian American
Italian American
An Italian American , is an American of Italian ancestry. The designation may also refer to someone possessing Italian and American dual citizenship...

s on the East Coast
East Coast of the United States
The East Coast of the United States, also known as the Eastern Seaboard, refers to the easternmost coastal states in the United States, which touch the Atlantic Ocean and stretch up to Canada. The term includes the U.S...

 and around the Chicago area refer to tomato sauce as "gravy
Gravy
Gravy is a sauce made often from the juices that run naturally from meat or vegetables during cooking. In North America the term can refer to a wider variety of sauces and gravy is often thicker than in Britain...

", "tomato gravy", or "Sunday gravy", especially sauces with a large quantity of meat simmered in them, similar to the Italian Neapolitan ragù
Neapolitan ragù
Neapolitan ragù is one of the two most famous varieties of meat sauces called ragù...

. "Gravy" is an erroneous English translation from the Italian sugo which means juice, but can also mean sauce (as in sugo per pastasciutta). The expression for "gravy" in Italian is sugo d'arrosto, which is literally "juice of a roast" and is not specifically tomato sauce.

American supermarkets commonly carry a variety of prepared tomato sauces described as "spaghetti sauce" or "pasta sauce." Common variations include meat sauce, marinara sauce, and sauces with mushroom
Mushroom
A mushroom is the fleshy, spore-bearing fruiting body of a fungus, typically produced above ground on soil or on its food source. The standard for the name "mushroom" is the cultivated white button mushroom, Agaricus bisporus; hence the word "mushroom" is most often applied to those fungi that...

s or sweet red peppers.

Louisiana

A spicy tomato sauce known as sauce piquante is common in Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

 Cajun cuisine
Cajun cuisine
Cajun cuisine is the style of cooking named for the French-speaking Acadian or "Cajun" immigrants deported by the British from Acadia in Canada to the Acadiana region of Louisiana, USA. It is what could be called a rustic cuisine — locally available ingredients predominate, and preparation...

, that can contain any seafood, poultry, or meats such as wild game. It is typically served over white rice. In Louisiana Creole cuisine
Louisiana Creole cuisine
Louisiana Creole cuisine is a style of cooking originating in Louisiana which blends French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Greek, Asian Indian, Native American, and African influences, as well as general Southern cuisine...

, there is a tomato sauce known as a Creole sauce. It is similar to Italian tomato sauce, but features more Louisiana flavors derived from the fusion of French and Spanish cooking styles. They both usually contain the traditional holy trinity
Holy trinity (cuisine)
The holy trinity is the Cajun and Louisiana Creole variant of mirepoix: onions, bell peppers, and celery in roughly equal quantities. This mirepoix is the base for much of the cooking in the regional cuisines of Louisiana...

 of diced bell pepper
Bell pepper
Bell pepper, also known as sweet pepper or a pepper and capsicum , is a cultivar group of the species Capsicum annuum . Cultivars of the plant produce fruits in different colors, including red, yellow, orange and green. Bell peppers are sometimes grouped with less pungent pepper varieties as...

, onion, and celery
Celery
Apium graveolens is a plant species in the family Apiaceae commonly known as celery or celeriac , depending on whether the petioles or roots are eaten: celery refers to the former and celeriac to the latter. Apium graveolens grows to 1 m tall...

.

Tomato gravy

Tomato gravy, which is distinct from the term as used by northeastern Italian Americans when referring to tomato sauce, is a sauce common in some rural areas of the United States, particularly where tomatoes were a staple food
Staple food
A staple food is one that is eaten regularly and in such quantities that it constitutes a dominant portion of a diet, and that supplies a high proportion of energy and nutrient needs. Most people live on a diet based on one or more staples...

. Tomato gravy is prepared in a method similar to white gravy. The cooked tomatoes, some fat (usually cured pork fat
Lard
Lard is pig fat in both its rendered and unrendered forms. Lard was commonly used in many cuisines as a cooking fat or shortening, or as a spread similar to butter. Its use in contemporary cuisine has diminished because of health concerns posed by its saturated-fat content and its often negative...

) and flour are cooked together until thick, and seasoned
Seasoning
Seasoning is the process of imparting flavor to, or improving the flavor of, food.- General meaning :Seasonings include herbs and spices, which are themselves frequently referred to as "seasonings"...

 with salt and pepper. Onions or bell peppers may be added as well. Typically, tomato gravy is served over spaghetti
Spaghetti
Spaghetti is a long, thin, cylindrical pasta of Italian origin. Spaghetti is made of semolina or flour and water. Italian dried spaghetti is made from durum wheat semolina, but outside of Italy it may be made with other kinds of flour...

, rice
Rice
Rice is the seed of the monocot plants Oryza sativa or Oryza glaberrima . As a cereal grain, it is the most important staple food for a large part of the world's human population, especially in East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and the West Indies...

,pasta
Pasta
Pasta is a staple food of traditional Italian cuisine, now of worldwide renown. It takes the form of unleavened dough, made in Italy, mostly of durum wheat , water and sometimes eggs. Pasta comes in a variety of different shapes that serve for both decoration and to act as a carrier for the...

, eggs
Egg (food)
Eggs are laid by females of many different species, including birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish, and have probably been eaten by mankind for millennia. Bird and reptile eggs consist of a protective eggshell, albumen , and vitellus , contained within various thin membranes...

, toast
Toast
Toast is bread that has been browned by exposure to radiant heat. This browning reaction is known as the Maillard reaction. Toasting warms the bread and makes it firmer, so it holds toppings more securely...

 and biscuit
Biscuit
A biscuit is a baked, edible, and commonly flour-based product. The term is used to apply to two distinctly different products in North America and the Commonwealth Nations....

s.

Indian

Indian curry
Curry
Curry is a generic description used throughout Western culture to describe a variety of dishes from Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Sri Lankan, Thai or other Southeast Asian cuisines...

, especially as it has been exported out of India, is recognizable for heavily spiced sauces, often made from a tomato base.

See also

  • Neapolitan sauce
    Neapolitan sauce
    Neapolitan sauce is the collective name given to various basic tomato-based sauces derived from Italian cuisine, often served over pasta and then sprinkled with grated Parmesan cheese. Most recipes contain garlic and onions...

  • Tomato paste
    Tomato paste
    Tomato paste is a thick paste that is made by cooking tomatoes for several hours to reduce moisture, straining them to remove the seeds and skin, and cooking them again to reduce them to a thick, rich concentrate...

  • Tomate frito
  • Hot sauce
    Hot sauce
    Hot sauce, chili sauce or pepper sauce refers to any spicy sauce made from chili peppers and other ingredients.-Ingredients:There are many recipes for hot sauces - the common ingredient being any kind of peppers. A group of chemicals called capsaicinoids are responsible for the heat in chili peppers...

  • Ketchup
    Ketchup
    Ketchup is a sweet-and-tangy condiment typically made from tomatoes, vinegar, sugar or high-fructose corn syrup and an assortment of...


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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