Why add tomato paste?
Since switching from jarred spaghetti and pizza sauces to making these sauces from canned tomato products (and hopefully soon to my own homegrown canned tomatoes), I've been wondering why/if it's necessary to add that 6-8 oz of tomato paste to the whole tomatoes, diced tomatoes, and tomato sauces that make up most of the sauce. I know it thickens a bit - would simmering the sauce without a lid until it's the right consistency do the same thing? What's the importance of tomato paste?
I haven't the foggiest idea. I make my own sauce and have never added tomato paste.
Because that's what the recipe calls for. However, live a little dangerously and try some of your own ideas, be creative.
Tomato adds a flavor and brings in a unique taste to your dish.
I normally add it to most of my dishes where in sauces are used like pizza, pasta...
It really isn't necessary at all. I make spaghetti sauces from whole canned Roma tomatoes and they are just fine without the tomato paste. I crush the tomatoes in the pot that I use to cook the sauce. You do have to cook the sauce a bit more, but not much.
The tomato paste does add some concentrated tomato flavor and it aids in thickening, but like I said, it definitely isn't necessary. I have been making great spaghetti sauce without it for years.
I'd say eliminate it and experiment with cooking the tomatoes a bit longer. You may find that you prefer a different way of making the sauce.
For me adding tomato paste is not just for flavor and thickening , it also gives your tomato sauce good color specially when using light colored ripe tomato . Even when you using red ripe tomato you cannot attain the true color of tomato sauce specially for pizza and for pasta .
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