Tomato Passata, known as Tomato Puree in America, is pureed strained tomatoes that is sold in tall bottles. It’s 100% tomato, no additives or flavourings. It’s smoother than crushed tomatoes and makes gorgeous thick tomato based sauces.
Traditionally in Italy, it’s made at the end of summer when tomatoes are ripe and juicy, then the passata is bottled and stored to be used throughout the year until the next tomato season.
10 years ago, passata was hard to find in Australia. Nowadays, it’s sold at major supermarkets (Coles and Woolworths) in the pasta section, as well as fresh produce stores like Harris Farms and of course Italian delis. By weight, it’s usually slightly better value than canned tomato.
Tomato passata makes thicker more intense tomato flavoured sauces than using the equivalent amount of crushed or diced canned tomatoes. It’s brilliant to use for making quick pasta sauces and soups, where you don’t simmer for a long time to allow chunks of crushed or diced tomato to break down and thicken the sauce.
Tomato passaat is known as tomato puree in America. It is different to tomato sauce in the US (which is pureed tomato like passata but with flavourings added).
Tomato passata is thinner and less intense flavoured than tomato paste.
I love using tomato passata, and you can see all my recipes made using passata here. Here are a few examples: