Friday, September 24, 2010

Basic Tomato Sauce For Pasta

A basic recipe that is good just as is, or add an endless variety of ingredients to suit your taste!

2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion finely chopped
1 stalk celery finely chopped
1 small carrot finely chopped
2 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 28 ounce can crushed or diced tomatoes
1/2 of 6 ounce can tomato paste
3 tablespoons dry sherry or 1/2 cup red wine
small pinch red pepper flakes or powder
4 tablespoons olive oil
ground black pepper to taste
salt to taste

Cook onions, carrot and celery in olive oil over low heat for a minute or two. Add garlic and cook until onions are translucent, about 10 minutes or so. Be careful not to burn the garlic! Garlic is usually added after the onions and celery cook for a few minutes because garlic will burn faster. Burnt garlic turns bitter!
Add parsley, basil, oregano and pepper. Increase heat to medium and add tomatoes, tomato paste and sherry. Cook for a few minutes while stirring. Add pepper flakes, cover and reduce heat to low simmer and cook for 30 minutes.

And that's all there is to it. You can make the sauce thinner by adding a little tomato juice or water to it. This sauce is an excellent base that you can add many things to. Add meat, sliced mushrooms, zucchini, artichoke hearts, green peppers, you name it! If you're going to add meat, cook the meat first, and add before the tomatoes. Any vegetables can be cut up and added just before the tomatoes.

2 pounds of fresh peeled and seeded tomatoes may be used instead of canned. If fresh tomatoes are used, more salt may be needed and the sauce may need to cook a little longer. The flavors in this sauce get even better if it is frozen or kept in the refrigerator for a day or two
My Zimbio