Quick Tomato Sauce
This sauce can be assembled in 20 minutes from ingredients right in the house. It is an excellent all-purpose red sauce for pasta or any recipe calling for tomato sauce.
INGREDIENTS | YIELDS 1 quart
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 tablespoons chopped garlic (about 5 cloves)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano (optional)
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes (use a domestic brand like Redpack, Progresso, Hunt's, or Muir Glen Organic — most imports in supermarkets are old and sour)
- 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes in purée
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan for 1 minute over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, and oregano if using; cook 5 minutes, until onions are translucent.
Stir in tomato paste and sugar; cook, stirring, 5 minutes more.
Add crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Simmer 10 minutes.
Being Creative with Your Tomato Sauce
There are many options available to you when preparing a tomato sauce. Try replacing the oregano with a bay leaf or some basil. Try a finely diced pepper or even cilantro in place of (or in addition to) the onion. Another idea is to look around the grocery store at what types of tomato sauces there are and take a crack at incorporating some of those varieties in your own sauce. Vodka and cream are also popular flavorings these days. Be sure to steam off any alcohol after adding vodka to tomato sauce.