Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Cook-A-Long with Brooke-A-Long: Edition 8

Mmmmm, sauce!
My Mum always says to me "just because you CAN do it all, doesn't mean you NEED to do it all" and she's so right. It's all gone a bit pear shaped around here the past couple of weeks while I've tried to do too much.  We're using menu plans from previous weeks (the benefit of keeping your menu plans and shopping lists in a folder to re-use when things get crazy!), there's no bulk bread baking happening and I feel a little bit like if I shake my head too hard all the things I'm trying madly to remember will simply fall out.

So, in an effort to delegate out something that I don't actually have to physically do, I've started getting my boys to pack their own lunchboxes.  Jack supervises Sam to make sure he doesn't forget one of the essential items on their little checklist and I give their lunchboxes a thumbs up before they get packed into school bags.  So far, so good.  It works well because they don't often have sandwiches and so there's no mucking about while they butter bread, find a filling etc.  They tend to have leftovers from dinner or breakfast or savoury items I've baked like mini quiches etc.  Their all time favourite lunch time savoury item are Cheese Puffs or Mini Pulled Beef & Beer Pies, with a little container of tomato sauce.

Which leads me, obviously, to the Cook-A-Long.  I'd love for everyone to try and do their own tomato sauce.  It is not hard.  It doesn't take long.  It's not expensive.  It's a staple that everyone has in their pantry and, once you make it yourself just once, you'll never buy it again!

This is the recipe from the Everyday Cookbook, the Thermomix Bible!

Tomato Sauce
(Everyday Cookbook)


*  400g ripe tomatoes
*  1 clove garlic
*  120g ripe plums - washed and de-stoned
*  100g sugar
*  50g white wine vinegar
*  1 bay leaf
*  2 cloves
*  1 small dried hot Chilli - deseeded
*  Salt to taste


1.  Wash the tomatoes, cut in half and leave to drain in TM basket for about an hour with the cut sides facing down.

2.  Place the garlic into the TM bowl and chop for 3 seconds on speed 7.

3. Add the tomatoes and plums and mix for 30 seconds on speed 7.

4. Add all other ingredients and cook for 30 minutes at 100 on speed 1.  At the end of cooking, take out the bay leaf and cloves if you can find them and then blend for 1 minute on speed 8.

Pour into sterilised bottles and keep in the fridge.


Carla, from A Foodie Mum, has successfully made the sauce without sugar by replacing that component with 3 dried pitted dates.  Another friend mentioned during the week that if you can't source any plums, replace them with pitted prunes.

If after blending the sauce is too thin for your liking, try cooking it a little longer with the MC removed (put the basket on top of the lid though, to prevent tomato sauce spitting everywhere).  I generally give mine 10 minutes on 100 on speed 2 afterwards to get it to a consistency I like.

Give it a go and let me know what you think!


  1. Your mother is right. Nevertheless, it is reassuring that we can. :)

    Best wishes from Manu from

  2. Manuela's comment made me laugh out loud! I really feel for you Brooke, cuz with Thermomix in the house we really do kick things up a notch, don't we? I forever have a list of about 8-10 things I'd like to do with Thermomix each day, but they don't ever ALL get done, and then BAM, it's already midnight and so the list keeps getting longer...

    I love the lunch ideas your boys enjoy. I have a fun recipe that you can add to their lunchbox list, as soon as I have time to post it... if I ever get around to doing all those other things ahead on the list ;-)