Thursday, June 23, 2011

Feeling saucy... Homemade marinara sauce

I am not Italian, and I will never pretend that I can cook like I am.  That being said, I love a good pasta sauce (or gravy, if you're Italian) and crave Italian every once in a while.  What I don't enjoy.... paying for an Italian dish that I could make at home for a fraction of the price.  I can make a mean sauce that is fresh and tastes like it is from an Italian kitchen.  

I started making my own pasta sauce when I have the time instead of buying canned sauce because you know exactly what goes into it.  This means lower amounts of salt, preservatives etc and no high fructose corn syrup!  It's so easy and you can stock up on most of the ingredients when they are on weekly specials.  Tonight I made it with several different brands of tomatoes...whatever was in my pantry, most of which I stocked up on when they were on sale.  

Here is a basic recipe to follow that I basically throw together in one pot.  You can make a huge batch and use it in several recipes (think chicken parmesan, marinara and meatballs, lasagna, even as a sauce for pizza!)  Sauce also freezes very nicely in case you don't think you will use it before it goes back. Freeze half of the batch in a plastic container so you don't get sick of it!

Nicole's Garlic Marinara Sauce
Serves 8-10

Ingredients:
1/2 cup of tomato paste
24 oz of diced tomatoes (No salt added)
24 oz of crushed tomatoes (No salt added)
1/4 cup of olive oil plus 1 Tbsp 
1 small Vidalia onion, sliced thin
2 Tbsp sugar
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 Tbsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp dried oregano
2 Tbsp dried basil
salt, as needed
pepper, to taste

Instructions:
Heat 1 Tbsp of olive oil over medium heat with the chopped garlic and onion until it starts to brown (5-7 minutes).  Add the rest of the ingredients and allow to cook over medium heat for 30-45 minutes.  

Enjoy over pasta or in any recipe that your heart desires!!!


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