I like making food for family and friends. It is a type of nurturing. In a time when everyone feels busy and so many of us rely on fast or frozen food, cooking and sharing a meal with another person feels like a gift.

Most of the time the goal is to get a warm meal ready in 30 minutes or less. However, every once in a while I enjoy dedicating time to a meal. I especially like this because my husband and son get excited about the food that I make for them.

Food that takes time and patience has a special significance to me. It feels like a luxury to devote time to meals. So, on occasion, I make special foods. Recently, I took it upon myself to make a tomato-based sauce.

I was lucky enough to obtain a recipe from a friend (Ann S.) whose sauce I long admired. The recipe is simple, elegant and delicious. And it is the sauce that Ann’s Italian family has made forever. If you are ready to get started, here we go…

A good marinara sauce requires few ingredients and a lots of time. Here is the list of ingredients:

2 Cans of tomato puree

2 Cans of warm water

½ yellow onion

Olive Oil

Fresh basil

Fresh garlic

Dried oregano

Dried Italian seasoning

Kosher salt

I put my fresh garlic and yellow onion through my food processor so that I could get small sized pieces. Then, I placed the garlic & onion mixture in a stock pot and sautéed them in olive oil until they were translucent. I poured two cans of tomato puree and two cans of warm water in the stock pot and added the fresh basil. Then, I added 1 tablespoon of dried oregano and 1 tablespoon of Italian seasonings.

The mixture must cook on medium until it boils. While it is boiling, make certain that you are stirring consistently. Once your sauce has boiled, reduce the heat so that it simmers for two hours. Make certain to stir your sauce every 10-15 minutes. When you are done, your efforts will yield approximately fifteen (15) cups of sauce. Remove the fresh basil from the pot. It is only intended to flavor. Let your sauce cool down properly. Then, I recommend that you freeze some of your sauce for future recipes.

Tomato-based pasta sauce simmering.

Special recommendations

Of course, I do not need to tell you that this sauce can be used anywhere a marinara is needed. However, there are a few things you can do to take recipes to the next level. One thing that my friend does is to drop sausage and peppers into the mix while it is marinating during the two hour simmering process. She removes them from the sauce when it has finished cooking. She then uses them to create incredible sausage sandwiches. I like to use the sauce as a pizza sauce. But, in order to do that I recommend the you finely chop your onions and garlic. This will make a delicious pizza sauce.

What will you add to this recipe?

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