No-Cook Tomato & Almond Pasta Sauce

* Update - in the time that it took me to write this post which admittedly is 24hrs, someone else has posted first, so any residual feelings of hosting / first posting guilt can be forgotten ;-)

If you pop by my blog from time to time you might have seen that I'm hosting this month's Pasta Please challenge, and my chosen theme is Cheeseless Wonders. It's a monthly pasta themed blog challenge organised by Jac at Tinned Tomatoes.

I have to confess I'm feeling slightly guilty about being both the host, and the first person to post to join in via the Linky, but we're a week into the challenge now, so I don't think I'm abusing my powers too much ;-)

I'm also very much hoping that come the end of the month, I won't end up being the only person to have participated!

So my cheese-free entry is for No-Cook Tomato and Almond Pasta Sauce which was inspired by the Internet in general, then I went freestyle, and even left the laptop in the kitchen whilst I made it - no recipe other than the back of an envelope where I jotted down the things I was adding as I went along.

No-Cook Tomato and Almond Pasta Sauce (makes enough sauce for 2-3 servings)

  • 4 halves of sundried tomato (the dry sort, not in oil)
  • 8 cherry tomatoes
  • 12 almonds (skin on)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp boiling water
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Roughly chop the sundried tomatoes and put into a jug that you can fit a magic wand (or immersion blender) in. Add the boiling water and leave for 5 mins.
Add the almonds, give a mix, and leave for another 5 mins.
Put all of the other ingredients into the jug, then carefully blend - go gently at first, otherwise you risk almonds flying out across your kitchen, or tomato explosions!
Keep blitzing until smooth and silky - you might need to add a little more water to loosen it up if it starting to get too thick - I added another 2 tbps - this will depend on the size and juiciness of your tomatoes.

Stir through hot cooked and drained pasta and you're ready to go. Mr E and I ate ours with a sprinkling of chopped black olive which went really well. Mini-M had hers just with pasta and sauce. There was a moment when we thought she was going to be unusually adventurous and try an olive, but retrospectively, I think she was probably just concerned she might be missing out on raisins, and once she had satisfied herself that wasn't the case, all curiosity disappeared.

Mini-M was keen that I took a photo of hers too...
This is a really lovely pasta sauce - the sundried tomatoes give it a good depth of flavour, and the almonds work really well with the smoked paprika. It's also seriously low effort, which is always a winner chez Makey-Cakey! It would make a great dip for tortilla crisps or the like, if you left it a little thicker too.

See - cheese-free isn't so bad!?!? Come on people - get your pasta on and join in!