10 April, 2015
Simple Marinara Sauce
Marinara Sauce is a simple recipe when done in it’s basic traditional way. The simplest I’ve ever read or heard about was in Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking by Marcella Hazan. Here is the recipe and it is as good as it is simple. I’ve tried a lot of different ways to do this great sauce and have wound up settling on this recipe. The size of this batch can be reduced to just what you may need for just one meal. Or, you might want to make as much as we do and put it up in zip lock bags in the freezer so it will be waiting for you
Basic Tomato Sauce AKA Marinara Sauce
This is what you’ll need:
Good extra virgin olive oil
Onions-2 small or 1 medium sized, chopped
Chopped garlic-5-6 cloves depends on the size
Salt and black pepper
Pinch of crushed red pepper
2 bay leaves
A pinch of dried thyme
1 cup chopped fresh parsley or ½ cup dried
½ cup chopped fresh basil or ¼ cup dried
Some red wine.
4-28oz. cans good Roma (aka plum) tomatoes,imported from Italy and with the fewest ingredients. If you can find them diced that’s good. If they are whole you are going to have to put them in a bowl and crush them by hand or pulse them, a little!, in the blender, in batches.
Put a medium sized stock pot on medium high. Add enough olive oil to cover the bottom.
Add the onions. Cook for about 3 minutes stirring occasionally or until they begin to become translucent. Then add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Don’t let them brown.
Add everything else except the tomatoes. Stir it all together and let it cook for a minute more.
Put in the tomatoes and stir it up. Add the wine. When it starts to simmer lower the heat to med. low. You gotta stir it up about every 8-10 minutes to keep it from sticking and burning on the bottom. Use a wooden spoon or a Teflon pancake flipper and drag it across the bottom to get all the solids that want to stick there mixed up into the sauce.
How long? Some cook it for just 20 minutes to a half hour. We like an hour and a half but you could cook it as long as you want depending on how smooth you want the texture.
It’ll last in the fridge at least 3 weeks and in the freezer, in zip lock bags, at least 6 months.Just put enough in a zip lock so the bag stays kinda thin and let it freeze laying flat. Then when you want to use it, just can break off only what you need at the time.
A new twist on this. Now we double the above recipe and can the finished sauce in seven, one quart, wide mouth mason jars. Me, canning, who’d a thunk it. Yeah, it’s a little more work. we put the finished sauce in the jars and put them in a pot of water with enough to cover the jars by an inch. Boil for a half hour. Put them on a towel covered area of the counter top and let them rest there overnight.
Boy, it’s easy to grab a jar off the shelf, spoon out what you need and if there is any still in the jar just put it in the fridge.
Gammy was a country girl who grew up on a farm. She taught this Jersey boy how to do this.