Parma Rosa

There is this little restaurant around the corner from my house, Gloria’s Little Italy. I went several times before I discovered the deliciousness of their Rosata (pink) sauce, but once I found it I was hooked. Then when my book club’s pot luck dinner was pasta themed, and I signed up to make a sauce, I thought I’d take a shot at duplicating the pink sauce.

I did a little searching and finally found Gretchen’s recipe.

As I made it, I ran into a few problems, but after a little tweaking it was perfect. I loved it so much that I made it again only a few days later for Philip and me. And now you can make it if you’d like…here’s the recipe with my alterations:

Parma Rosa Sauce

1/4 c. olive oil
2 tsp minced garlic
1 1/2 to 2 lbs. roma tomatoes (Smiths only had roma, so that’s what I used…it probably makes little difference)
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
1/2 c. heavy cream
1/2 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. parsley
1 TB of sugar (or to taste)
Water or extra cream as needed

Yield: 4-6 servings

In a large heavy saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat, then add the garlic cloves, whole tomatoes, and salt and pepper.

Cover and cook tomatoes until they’re soft and the skin falls off easily (about 10-15 min.). You might need to turn down the temperature slightly so your tomatoes don’t char. Some of my garlic burned, but it didn’t make a difference in the taste. Pull off the skins (they should come off really easily), and fish them out.

Turn the heat to medium/low and continue cooking for a minute or two, uncovered, stirring and mashing the tomatoes down. Add water, if needed, to keep sauce from sticking to the pot. Stir in cream slowly, then add sugar and parmesan cheese. (Taste it. The sugar tempers the acidic tomatoes. You’ll know if you need to add more sugar if the sauce is really tart.)

Transfer contents of the pot into blender, and blend until pretty smooth. Return to pot. Add water or extra cream, if needed, to bring the sauce to desired consistency. Then add an extra handful of Parmesan cheese to add a bit of texture and a nice sharp flavor.

Serve hot over noodles (and grilled chicken if your husband, like mine, cannot eat a meal without meat).



  1. Janssen says:

    I'll have to give this a shot. It's one of my favorite things to order at Little Gloria's.

  2. um I am OBSESSED with glorias pink sauce. I am definately stealing this recipe!!! thanks, merrick!

  3. Emily Kate says:

    Thanks for sharing this! I love the pink sauce at Gloria's!

  4. Bethany says:

    Sounds delicious. I love and miss Gloria's.

  5. Packrat says:

    Sounds wonderful. Thanks. (Printing it now.) Sadly, I'll probably have to use frozen or canned tomatoes. Store bought "fresh" tomatoes would be tasteless and way too expensive. (That's what happens when one lives in the hinterlands.)

  6. Kayla says:

    I made this tonight and it was delicious! Sadly, I had to use canned tomatoes but it was still quite good. On the 'keepers' list.


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