Recipe: Spiced tomato sauce


A medium Spanish onion - substitute two banana shallots if you feel the need to be superior.

A tablespoon of single estate, extra virgin olive oil – sunflower oil would do just as well but you don’t live on a council estate do you?

A clove of Lautrec garlic - imagine how impressed your friends will be!

A dessert spoon of smoked paprika – smoked, that’s good isn’t it? I could hug myself.

Two teaspoons of toasted cumin seeds – use ready ground cumin if you’re a big fucking pleb. (Actually, in this instance, toasting the seeds yourself makes a big difference to the flavour, so do as you’re bloody well told).

A tin of tomatoes – pay as much as you want for them, but try not to be too much of a middle class twat about it.


Take an 8inch Global chef’s knife and that really expensive black marble chopping board you’re so fucking proud of and put them in the bin because they’re shit. Finely chop your allium of choice on a plastic board that won’t blunt your perfectly adequate Victorinox household standard quality, black polypropylene-handled kitchen knife, because your name isn’t Gordon-sodding-Ramsay.

Heat the single estate extra virgin olive oil in a heavy bottomed saucepan until it smokes, then pour it down the drain and try and remember only to use it for salad dressings in future. Start again with the vegetable oil and gently sauté the onion or shallots until soft and translucent.

Smash the garlic with the side of your knife and mince finely while thinking exactly how much money you could have saved by buying the bog standard stuff. Add the garlic to the onions and stir quickly to prevent burning while reminding yourself to say, “I only use Lautrec garlic now, the difference in flavour is just amazing” the next time your pretentious friends come round for dinner.

Add the paprika and cumin and fry gently until your whole house smells like an old sock. Stir in the tomatoes and adjust the seasoning (google language tools: translate text “adjust the seasoning” from Foodiewankspeak to English =“add some salt and pepper”).

If you’ve had enough sense to buy Smart Price tomatoes, you might want to add some sugar or a dash of ketchup to counter their car battery acid-like qualities. Smug gits who traded their first born for a tin of San Marzano can omit this last step.

Simmer the sauce gently for 30 minutes and serve with roasted vegetables and cous cous flavoured with spring onions, mint, flat leaf parsley, coriander, lemon and that single estate extra virgin olive oil your just dying to use, while quietly muttering “this is a bit bloody Delia isn’t it?” under your breath.


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