BASIC SAUCE

BASIC SAUCE

1 pound fresh California tomatoes (3 to 4 medium tomatoes), coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar (1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons)

In a food processor or blender, combine and process all ingredients to make a rough-textured sauce. Adjust flavors to taste.

For 2 Servings of Pasta:
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add 4 ounces dried pasta; cook according to package directions. Drain. Return pasta to pot and add sauce (Basic Sauce plus and Monday to Friday variation, if desired). Toss together over low heat about a minute to heat through. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Yield: 1 1/2 Cups

Notes: Monday to Friday Variations to 1 1/2 cups sauce, add:
Monday: 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

Tuesday: 1/4 cup chopped Greek or Italian olives + 1 1/2 teaspoon finely grated orange peel

Wednesday: 1/2 cup crumbled Feta cheese + 3/4 teaspoon finely chopped fresh or dried rosemary

Thursday: 3 tablespoons toasted peanuts + 4 to 6 thin slices prosciutto, cut into bits

Friday: 3 tablespoon capers + 2 tablespoon chopped parsley