TOMAYTO TOMAHTO PASSATA
January 11, 2022
Originating in southern Italy, where San Marzano and other plum tomatoes reign supreme, passata is a thick, intensely tomatoey puree that’s perfect for sauces, pizza, stews, and so on. From the verb passare—to go through—fresh tomatoes get heated just until their juices are released and their flesh soft, then are passed through a mill to remove skins and seeds. Long-season heirloom tomatoes sweetened from the crescendo of the summer sun and subsequent cooler nights of late summer, then harvested at their respective peak ripeness, are ideal for passata production. It’s a pantry staple both in Italian homes and here at Turtle Rock, so we dedicated several days of prime real estate in the kitchen to crafting this must-have during the summer, utilizing a profusion of our organic, indeterminate tomatoes plus lemon juice. Simple, handy, and how tomatoes are meant to taste.
Tomato Herb Rice & Lentils
This is one of our favorite ways to use Turtle Rock’s passata during the cooler season. Adapted from The Silver Spoon—essentially the Joy of Cooking for Italian home kitchens—it’s a modest but hearty dish that can easily be modified as you see fit. We suggest serving it on a brisk night alongside roasted vegetables, stewed meats, or with olives and a firm sliced cheese.
Yield: Serves 6
2/3 cup French green lentils, rinsed
2 cups Turtle Rock Passata
4 cups water
1 3/4 cups long-grain white rice, rinsed
2 teaspoons mixed dried herbs or spices to your liking (oregano, parsley, thyme, rosemary, even a curry blend!)
3 tablespoons butter or olive oil
Salt & pepper, to taste
Note that the amount of water has been increased