Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Basic Tomato Sauce

I grew up eating from the plastic container of Prego marinara sauce so when I first made my own tomato sauce, I was in awe of how easy it was.  I made this tomato sauce to use this week for pastas and pizzas.  The long cook time brings out the sweetness of the tomatoes without adding any sugar which is pretty awesome.  You can thicken the sauce by leaving the lid off of the pot.  I left my pot lid partially on.  It is a personal choice.  Also, I went easy on the salt for this sauce because I didn't know exactly what I was using the tomato sauce for and I didn't know if I was going to add other salty things to it.

From My Father's Daughter and I added minor notes
Makes 4 cups

2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
4 fresh large basil leaves
2 28-ounce cans whole peeled tomatoes with their juice
Coarse salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over low heat, add the garlic, and cook for 5 minutes (the garlic will become very fragrant and should not be let to brown).  Add 2 of the basil leaves and stir for a minute.  Add the tomatoes and their juice and the 2 remaining basil leaves.  Turn heat to high.  Bring the sauce to a boil, turn the heat on low, season with salt and pepper, and let it bubble away on low heat for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally and crushing the tomatoes with your wooden spoon (I kept the lid on the pot and left it partially open to let some of the steam out).  Cool and refrigerate.

The sauce should darken and thicken slightly like the picture below.  You can see that I crushed the tomatoes with my wooden spoon as the recipe instructed.

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