Here's a simple tomato sauce that anyone can make quickly with a few ingredients from their pantry. This base sauce can be used as the foundation to any tomato sauce for spaghetti, any pasta dish and great as a layer between lasagna. Be creative by adding veggies, meat balls or ground meat in the sauce.
1 can 28 oz whole peeled plum tomatoes
1 can 14.5 oz diced tomatoes
1 can 6 oz tomato paste (to thicken sauce)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (more or less to sauté onions and garlic)
1 small sweet onion - finely diced
1 clove garlic, minced
Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste or Mrs. Dash (Salt-Free, regular or garlic & herb variety)
Fresh mushrooms, sliced in pieces or 1 can 4 oz mushrooms (pieces and stems)
2 tablespoons Italian Seasoning or a mix of dry: marjoram, basil, thyme, oregano & rosemary
1 box of your favorite dry pasta
1 teaspoon of light brown sugar to taste
1 lb - meatballs or lean ground meat or sausage (optional)
Mix chopped veggies (optional, as desired)
1. Fill large pasta pot with water and bring to a boil (for pasta)
2. Optional: if you are adding meat - cook in separate pot or add precooked meat in step 5.
3. At the same time, in another pot, heat a Dutch oven size pot with olive oil. Sauté onions for 4 minutes then add garlic and sauté for another minute.
4. Add cans of tomatoes and half a cup of plain water (use the water to rinse out the cans of tomatoes). Bring tomatoes to a low simmer (when the tomato sauce slightly bubbles).
5. Add mushrooms and dry seasonings: salt, pepper, Mrs. Dash (opt), Italian seasoning
6. Add (optional) precooked meat
7. Cook pasta in boiling water - follow directions on box, drain and set aside
Simmer sauce for a few minutes and it's ready to eat. It's also ok to simmer sauce longer (20-30 minutes) if you want the tomatoes to cook until they break down and the flavors blend together with meat.
Toss pasta with sauce per person you are serving. If you mix all the pasta with the sauce, the pasta will overcook and absorb more of the sauce which changes the texture of the pasta. Best to keep both sauce and pasta separate until ready to serve. When storing sauce and pasta - place pasta in plastic zip bag separate from sauce, which should be placed in a glass storage dish as the tomato sauce will stain plastic containers.
Top complete dish with fresh basil. Prepare garlic toast by spreading butter on bread with a light dusting of garlic powder – place in oven until toasted. Enjoy!
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