Recipe: Quick pasta sauce

Last weekend (and probably again this weekend) I suggested that Willie take his go at making fresh pasta!  We had a deal, if he made the pasta I would make the sauce and meatballs.  I’ve always wanted to make my own sauce but I thought it would take a long time.  Maybe I’ve just hung around too many italians and just envisioned standing over a pot all day and nurturing it. No doubt, one day I would like to do that but in my life I don’t have time for all that!


Here is what you need:

2 (15 ounce) cans diced or crushed tomatoes*
1 (15 ounce) can stewed whole tomatoes*
1/4 cup white onion diced
4 cloves chopped garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp salt

*Notes: I use no salt added tomatoes so I can control my own salt content. I also used a hand blender to blend all the ingredients together but you can also use a blender to blend everything together.

1. In a saucepan, add the tbsp of olive oil, onion and chopped garlic on medium heat. Cook the garlic until slightly browned and onions are translucent.
2. Drain as much of the tomato water from the tomatoes as possible and then add add to pot. Reduce heat.
3. Add vinegar, oregano, basil and salt to the mixture. Let simmer for 5 minutes.
4. At this point you can use a hand mixer to blend everything together OR transfer everything in the sauce plan to a blender and process until smooth.
5. After blended, add the mixture back to the sauce pan and add tomato paste. Bring sauce to a boil and then reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes or until thickened. This is important because the vinegar will be overpowering and you need to give the it a chance to cook off and thicken.

Optional: After cooking your pasta, add a a couple of tablespoons of the pasta water to your sauce to tie everything together.

Serving size: 4-6

This sauce can be used on pasta, pizza, meatloaf, over rice…the possibilities are endless. It’s a quick sauce that is packed with a lot of flavor! Also, if you want to cook some ground beef or ground turkey to make it a meat sauce that’s great too. If you do that, you might want to add more tomatoes.

Have you ever made your own pasta sauce?