Sometimes my eyes get bigger than my stomach! In other words, sometimes when I’m grocery shopping, especially at Costco, I sometimes am motivated to load up on perishables because they’re such a great buy and the quantity is at least double that of the same price at a regular grocer. This scenario is precisely what happens a lot with tomatoes. I just love the heirloom tomatoes. And, I can’t pass up the Campari tomatoes. And, alas, they sit for days and maybe into a week or more on my counter. Yes, I’m using them, but with just the two of us, it’s hard for us to consume this big quantity. That’s where this creamy vodka marinara sauce was born.
I can’t stand to waste. Born and reared in southern West Virginia, coal-mining country, Mom never wasted anything. Most everything, particularly food was recycled and reinvented to be used in something else. Stale bread was saved for dressing, puddings or French toast. Small amounts of beans were frozen and saved for the next pot of vegetable soup. Plastic tubs and containers that things came in were cleaned and used for storage of other things. Even the drippings from frying bacon were considered ‘liquid gold’ and this fabulous seasoning grease was stored in jars or cans sure to be used when cooking something else whether frying potatoes or seasoning vegetables.
So when the about seven plus day old cherry heirloom tomatoes and a few of the Campari tomatoes came near their end of life for deliciousness for typical uses, salads, caprese, sandwiches, and more, I couldn’t bear to toss out my wrinkled aging sweet critters that still had great taste. I must say that this recipe totally refurbished them into something glorious and beautiful. I could have used them in soups or stews or even in a pot roast, but making this creamy vodka marinara sauce gave me several options, as you’ll see below, for using them over the next few days!