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April 2010 – To use or not to use garlic in Tomato Sauce?

April 2010 – To use or not to use garlic in Tomato Sauce?

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The result of using garlic in a tomato sauce is unique. The binding of those two tastes is so harmonic that gives you the feeling that anything different is incomplete.

In many valid cookery books we meet tomato sauce recipes enriched with the aroma and taste of this valuable ingredient. In some others (just as valid) not.

To use or not to use garlic in tomato sauce would be a fairly good question.

Let’s bring in our mind the composure of the “Provençale” sauce.

“Provençale” sauce is exactly a garlic-containing tomato sauce. The creation of such a sauce probably indicates that the original tomato sauce should not contain garlic.

Additionally, let’s not forget that tomato sauce is very frequently used as base for the creation of other sauces or dishes. Therefore if the final dish does not match the taste of garlic, our result would probably not be so nice or at least away from its true identity.

Also having in mind the fact that more people every day decide to avoid consuming garlic in order not to have the unpleasant smell of garlic in their breath, we should be very careful using this very beneficial nevertheless ingredient.

On the other hand we like it. As a matter of fact we love it.

These thoughts are wondering in my mind the last few days.

My conclusion and suggestion is to avoid the use of garlic in tomato sauce in the case of using it for farther creations (e.g. pizzas – imagine a child consuming a slice of pizza and then having the unpleasant smell of garlic in his breath all day long).

Now on the other hand when using garlic in a tomato sauce (which will definitely make it better) we must make sure that it is clearly mentioned on our menu in a way that it will be definitely understood  by the customer.


– Antonis Kavalieros –

Culinary arts Instructor

BA (Hons) Culinary Arts

Middlesex University

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