Even the simplest dishes are elevated when everything is homemade. Just for kicks, try this next weekend: a couple of hours spent not just opening jars, not just tearing into cans, not just ripping open packaging, just dealing with raw ingredients plus the know-how to forge them into an extraordinary meal.
Smoky Tomato Sauce
8 roma tomatoes (peeled and quartered)
1/2 white onion (finely diced)
1 rib celery (finely diced)
1 carrot (finely diced)
1 cup white wine
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons champagne vinegar
zest from 1 lemon
pinch of salt & pepper
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup water
1 clove garlic
Turn oven broiler on high. Drizzle quartered, peeled tomatoes with olive oil and stick them under the broiler until the edges are black, then remove them from heat and set aside.
In a skillet over medium-high heat, sauté onion, carrot, and celery in a few tablespoons of olive oil until the onion is translucent. Mix the wine, sugar, vinegar, salt, and pepper together; use that to deglaze the pan. Cook mixture until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the tomatoes, paste, and water. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Add sliced garlic and a few extra tablespoons of olive oil a few minutes before serving.
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 semolina flour
In a large bowl -- or on the countertop -- make a pile out of the mixed flours. Form a well in the center, crack the eggs into the well, and mix flour and eggs until a dough forms. Continue to knead for 3 minutes. Dough will be smooth. Cover and allow dough to rest for 15 minutes. Roll pasta into sheets using a pasta machine. Roll it down to a number 5 on the pasta machine. Using a pasta cutter, cut strips out of the pasta sheets.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta for just two minutes. Remove pasta from water and place into the sauce. Toss to coat pasta. Garnish with parmesan cheese, parsley, black pepper, and sea salt. We had this with a salad of arugula, goat cheese, and shallots dressed in olive oil, a tiny pinch of hickory smoked salt, and balsamic vinegar.