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Martha Stewart’s No-Cook Tomato Sauce Is The Utlimate Summer Recipe Hack

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There’s so much delicious food to eat in the summer, but there’s one little issue: it’s often just too hot to cook. Thankfully, we can look to one of our culinary idols to figure out how to deal with a glut of peak-season produce, even on those nights when standing over a hot skillet is just too much to handle. She might have a reputation for being fussy, but Martha Stewart is a queen of weeknight meals, one pot recipes,
and no-cook solutions to problems we’ve been dealing with for years. Yes, sometimes her version of a quick meal is caviar, crème fraîche, and blini, but other times she offers up delicious recipes like her no-cook tomato sauce, which is bound to be a summer staple once you learn how easy it is to make.

In the fall, winter, and early spring, it makes sense to use jarred or canned tomato sauce. The fresh tomatoes you can find in stores when they’re not actually in season are never as sweet or juicy as you want them to be, so jarred and canned tomatoes sauce, which is made and packed right after the tomatoes are picked, is a good bet.

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Courtesy of Clarkson Potter.

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In the summer, on the other hand, we want to use juicy, sweet, ripe tomatoes in everything, and that means leaving the jarred and canned sauces in the pantry. Instead, recipes like Stewart’s no-cook tomato sauce become par for the course. Even better? Unlike a traditional homemade tomato sauce, this one doesn’t require a long and slow simmer on your stove top, which will help keep things cool inside.

The tomatoes are tossed with oil, vinegar, garlic, basil, and salt, then are left to marinate and macerate for an hour. The sweet juices are drawn out, and when mixed with hot pasta water from a pot of spaghetti or other noodles, it emulsifies into a sunny and sweet-tasting sauce that clings to every bite of pasta. Stewart adds oil-packed tuna
to her recipe, which is a delicious source of protein that also has the benefit of not needing to be cooked. That’s another summer dinner win.

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Courtesy of Ortiz.

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Once you start making this recipe, it’s hard to go back while there are still in-season tomatoes to use up. You can try changing things up a bit, using different types of heirloom tomato to change the color and flavor of your no-cook tomato sauce, or by swapping tuna for grilled shrimp, or adding balsamic vinegar instead of red wine — basically, the options are as endless as they are delicious.

Before you go, check out our slideshow below:

Watch: A 5-Ingredient Grilled Pizza That’s Easier Than Ordering Takeout

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