For generations in our family, the kitchen has always been a pivot of social life, gatherings and love. Accompanied by the sounds of clinking pots, the chopping of herbs, boiling bubbles in water, intermittent stirring in sizzling pans, the ardour of cooking has filled our bellies and our home with soothing comfort, no matter days of joy or sorrow. It has always been a celebration, yes a feast that my German grandmother honoured until her 80s. Sometimes even singing while cooking, her passionate joy lured my eavesdropping grandfather to peak into the kitchen, who added the seasoning of conversations and a sprinkle of jokes to the preparations of a meal, where every meticulous step and hand movement was instilled deeper than the pages of any cookbook ever can.
I have continued the cooking tradition that has been passed on from generation to generation, adjusted, modified and expanded from mother to daughter, reenacting the insatiable zest for life that was poured into every dish. In all the years, I found the most joy in meals that are not confined by instructions, but when out of a few given ingredients, you create a lunch or dinner that has the touch of your hands from the very first chop to the last sprinkle of herbs and eventually tastes so good conjuring a wide smile on your face. Today, I cooked pasta and with the first bite, I couldn’t stop smiling from deliciousness. The ingredients and instructions should serve you as an inspiration to cook (not just during quarantine days) with a few basic, fresh and organic ingredients a homemade Mediterranean tomato sauce that tastes like Italy. Tomatoes, tuna & thyme will ceate a culinary rhyme! When you get a compliment like “Mh, it smells like the kitchen of an Italian mama!”, you know you have done everything right.
“It smells like the kitchen of an Italian mama!”
- Olive oil
- 1 garlic clove
- different sorts of larger tomatoes and cherry tomatoes
- some white wine
- 1/2 can of tomato puree
- about 4 dried tomatoes chopped
- fresh thyme (you can also use dried Mediterranean herbs like oregano)
- Salt & pepper
- 1 tbsp. of honey
“Tomatoes, tuna & thyme create a culinary rhyme!”
- Start by heating a good amount of olive oil in a pan on medium heat.
- Fry the finely chopped garlic whilst stirring until the colour becomes golden brown.
- Next, pour in some white wine and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes. Add the chopped larger tomatoes, the tomato puree and the dried tomato pieces.
- Season with salt, pepper & honey and fresh (or dried) Mediterranean herbs like thyme and let it cook to a sauce for about 20 minutes.
- In the meantime, heat the water and cook the pasta in a pot.
- Shortly before you think the sauce is done, add the small cherry tomatoes and the thuna to the sauce and let it cook for another 5 minutes.
- Top the al dente cooked pasta with tomato sauce.
- Before serving, sprinkle some fresh thyme and “Parmigiano” if you like.