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Escoffier's tomato sauce

Escoffier's Tomato Sauce

Cooking has evolved a lot in the last century and a half, but it's always fun to return to the great classics from time to time. Salt pork, stock and carrot add richness to this sauce. Flour is the only ingredient in the original recipe that we decided to leave out. Escoffier also asks us to pass it through a fine-mesh sieve to make an especially smooth sauce. We prefer to simply put it in a blender after removing the bay leaf or serve as is.


  • 4 lbs ripe tomatoes or 8 cups cooked tomatoes
  • 2 slices salt pork or bacon
  • 3 Tbsp clarified butter
  • 1 onion, minced fine
  • 1 carrot, minced fine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp thyme
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp brown or white sugar
  • 1 Tbsp black pepper, ground


  1. 1

    Fill a pot with water and bring to a boil. Blanch tomatoes for 1 minute until the skins begin to come off. Cool in a bowl of cold water. Peel tomatoes and remove tough stems. Crush tomatoes and set aside.

  2. 2

    Blanch salt pork in the same boiling water. Rinse under the cold water. Dice finely.

  3. 3

    Heat a large pot on medium. Add salt pork and clarified butter and sauté for 1 minute. Add onion, carrot, bay leaves and thyme. Cook for a few minutes until they begin to change color.

  4. 4

    Add stock and reduce by 75%.

  5. 5

    Add tomatoes, garlic, salt, sugar and pepper. Bring to a boil. Simmer for 1 hour, stirring on occasion to ensure the sauce does not stick. Remove bay leaves and purée if desired.