Three Sauces - The Basics

One of my girlfriends makes such a huge hassle when she decides to have a barbecue party. It really gets tiresome to watch her fret and fuss about simple details and not to mention she is constantly running to the supermarket to get something that has been forgotten and is an absolute must .... or the barbecue party will simply fall apart without it.
On the day she is like a wild animal running to and fro ... very exhausting and where's the fun?

I keep telling her to take it easy and then I shared a little secret with her. This secret I will share with you too.

Get yourself a basic! Well what does that mean, I presume you are asking yourself!

Easy ... Decide on a basic dip, sauce marinade and theme and you've just completed 60% of the job.

The rest is buying the ingredients, preparing and then of course sitting back and enjoying.

To demonstrate what I mean, I recently had a barbecue party. As a matter of fact it was rather spontaneous and I had just enough time to buy the most important things. I decided on a spicy Italian combination and wanted to do fish. The best thing was that my basic was already in the refrigerator just waiting for me.

I normally make three of my favorite sauces/dips in huge amounts and keep them cool in little jars. They are then used in a variety of different types of dishes, with meats, poultry, fish or just plain pasta.

I am sure you have heard of these:

Arrabiata Sauce
Pesto alla Genovese
Aglio Olio

With these three sauces, trust me, you can whip up a most delicious barbecue too. In this post I'll tell you about the sauces first. My next post will show you how to use these sauces for the barbecue.

Of course, this is my first entry to my own event!

Arrabiata Sauce

When I want to store this sauce in the refrigerator I normally make it with sun dried tomatoes. Otherwise when it is supposed to be made fresh and eaten with pasta use ripe, juicy fresh tomatoes. The problem with the following recipes is that I normally make this with just a feel for the amounts. I urge you to test yourself by tasting how you like it. Some like it tomato-ier other spicier. Just experiment till you have found your perfect taste.


300g sun dried tomatoes - I like to use the ones in jars as these have been preserved in a little oil and have a ton of taste.
2 tablespoons tomato puree
4-5 cloves garlic
a handful of fresh basel leaves
3-4 chilies
enough olive oil to make a smooth sauce.


In an electric blender or mixer put all of the ingredients together and blend at a high speed. Open scrape the sides of the blender and mix again. Check the consistency and add more oil if required.

Depending on how thick or thin you like it, blend the mixture until smooth.

Aglio Olio

I love this one! It can be used really everywhere. A touch in an Indian curry, plenty in a Thai dish, and of course a heap full on some toasted brushetta. Try getting organic garlic for this one if possible. You'll notice the difference in taste immediately.


Depending on the amount you make:
1 or 2 entire garlic spud - peeled
2 - 3 red chilies
olive oil


Place the garlic and chili in an electric mixer and chop according to your desired texture. I like it to be fine but not mushy.

Place in jars and fill with good olive oil.

Pesto alla Genovese

Now this recipe is a secret from an Italian lady I met in Liguria last year. This Pesto alla Genovese is probably the sauce I make the most at home. I love spreading a nice toasted italian bread with cream cheese and then adding a spoonful of the pesto on top. Simple and delicious.

These sauces are versatile to no end and only the lack of imagination will hinder the variety. Always good to have in store for a quick meal and for an elegant barbecue. as I'll show you in my next post.

Entry for:
Weekend Herb Blogging over at the lovely Gariella's blog.
Spice is Right IV at Barbara's.

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  1. A great post with wonderful photographs, Meeta. And finally, a recipe with sun-dried tomatoes from you. Yesssss!!!!

  2. I loved the pics. The bowls look so cute. To tell u the truth, I have never attended any barbecue party, but after reading your post, I want to attend. But I guess I have to wait for sometime for it :). Thnaks for sharing the recipes.

  3. You sure are a great host, right Meeta?The sauces look abosolutely yummy:)If the sauces are so good,i cant wait to see the round up!

  4. I have been looking for a good pesto recipe...will try and let you know...cheers

  5. Perfect! Three sauces that are such classics. Thank you for making all three. And the photos are gorgeous

  6. Lovely pictures of three delicious looking sauces. This transforms a typical meal into something special.

  7. Wow, what a great idea for do-aheads! How long do you figure they last in the fridge? Any tips?

  8. Vaish, Shilpa, Neelu - Thanks for your feedback. I love getting comments from my blog buddies about my pics.
    Sumi, how did you like the round-up? Thanks for the comments.
    Ash, don't forget to give me your verdict!
    Gabriella, yes and they are so easy to make. Glad if they help!
    Kalyn - thanks.
    Sher, thanks and yes, I use these on/in so many deffierent types of dishes. They are so versatile.
    Katerina, Well as I use them very often they don't last very long ;-)! My friend who I gave the recipes to said they last a few months in air tight jars - the ones with twist off lids. Those are also the ones I use. The oil preserves them from going bad too quickly.


Thank you for visiting What's For Lunch, Honey? and taking time to browse through my recipes, listen to my ramblings and enjoy my photographs. I appreciate all your comments, feedback and input. I will answer your questions to my best knowledge and respond to your comments as soon as possible.

In the meantime I hope you enjoy your stay here and that I was able to make this an experience for your senses.