Easy Homemade Tomato Sauce
I’ve written earlier about my laziness when it comes to making my own tomato sauce. (Which is a little ridiculous, given how much I love tomatoes.) It turns out that even an especially delicious tomato sauce like this one is easy to make and uses simple ingredients. The hardest part is caramelizing the onions, which took me a good 30 minutes of stirring them slowly over medium heat. Totally worth it.
After that you can basically just let the sauce simmer on its own for another 30 minutes (while you cook your pasta or get your pizza dough ready). Like I said, easy. And your kitchen will smell WONDERFUL.
Easy Homemade Tomato Sauce
(from my sister)
(makes enough for 10-12 servings of pasta, or 2-3 pizzas)
~ 2 cans diced tomatoes (or 1 can diced tomatoes, 1 can pureéd tomatoes/sauce; I used one 28 oz. can of each; see note below)
~ 1 medium onion, chopped
~ garlic cloves to taste, pressed or finely chopped (use ~2-5 cloves, depending on how garlickly you like your sauces)
~ 2-3 sprigs fresh rosemary, finely chopped
~ 2-3 Tbsp. olive oil
~ 2-3 Tbsp. butter (use equal parts olive oil and butter)
~ 1-2 Tbsp. red wine or balsamic vinegar (just a big splash– without measuring– will work fine)
~ 1-2 bay leaves
~ salt and pepper, to taste
~ several fresh basil leaves (optional)
How to make it:
1. Warm equal parts olive oil and butter over medium heat, then sauté the chopped onion until caramelized. (This will take up to 30 minutes of patiently stirring the onion so that it doesn’t burn– and perhaps gradually adding a little more olive oil and butter– over medium heat. You do need to let the onions start to sit occasionally for 30 seconds or so between stirrings so that they can brown, but be careful not to let them burn. This should result in onions that are soft, sweet, and golden.)
2. Add finely chopped garlic and fresh rosemary, as well as salt and pepper to taste.
3. De-glaze the pan by pouring in a big splash of red wine or balsamic vinegar, and stirring for a moment. Then add the tomatoes: if you use 2 cans of diced tomatoes (or several pounds fresh chopped tomatoes, peeled, quartered, and drained of seeds and liquid), you will later need to purée your sauce in a food processor; if you use 1 can diced and 1 can puréed tomatoes, you can skip the food processing, and you’ll end up with a chunky tomato sauce.
4. Add a bay leaf or two, and optionally, some fresh basil leaves.
5. Simmer over medium/low heat, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes, or until the flavor is rich.
6. If using a food processor, remove bay leaves before blending. Spread on pizza or serve with pasta, and save the extra sauce by canning or freezing.