Fall Cookbook Series, Week 2: Everyday Quick Tomato Sauce

It’s only week 2 and I’m already having to switch up my scheduled recipe for the week. Why? Because I was originally going to make soup, and it’s 92 degrees outside as I write this post! These lingering summer days and both wonderful and irritating. I appreciate the comfortable morning temperatures for when Isaac just wants to get outside first thing, but I’m forced to wait patiently for the best part of living in the Midwest – the changing of the season.

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Before I get into a long rant about how idyllic fall is, let’s talk about this week’s alternate menu item: everyday, quick tomato sauce! Here’s the recipe:

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 or 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes in tomato puree
  • 1 28-ounce can tomato puree
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt, plus more to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar or honey
  • tomato paste to thicken the sauce (optional)

This recipe truly was QUICK and easy! If you’re sick of buying mediocre Ragu sauce or spending too much money on the gourmet jarred sauces, here’s a cost effective way to eat great sauce all the time.

First step is to chop the onion and green bell pepper. Tip: chop the onion under running water! Concerned about the environment? Cut a minute off your next shower and call it even.IMG_20150906_153437Next, heat the oil and saute the onion and pepper for about 7 minutes, then add the garlic and saute for 30 more seconds. Turn heat to low and add all the other ingredients except for the tomato paste, and simmer for 15 minutes.

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Give it a taste! Does it need more salt? Maybe another dash of pepper? Continue to correct the seasoning and simmer, adding tomato paste if necessary.

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That’s it! Didn’t take too much effort and now I’ve got plenty of sauce to use or freeze for the next time I whip up pasta, pizza, lasagna, or whatever strikes my fancy. Delicioso!

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