This was a good recipe, I found it too bland for my taste, so I added at the 2hour cooking point about 1 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper, 1/2 teaspoon of Oregano and 1/2 teaspoon of thyme. Also after the first 2 hours of cooking it covered, I let it cook uncovered to reduce it, making it thicker and more flavorful. I will make again with the additions.
This was my very first time making tomato sauce from scratch. We have a bumper crop of Roma tomatoes this year, more than we know what to do with so I decided to try out this recipe and hopefully freeze off the extra sauce for the winter months. It was fantastic! Only I can see why some folks might be having problems with this recipe, the recipe says “10 Tomatoes’ but does not specify how large the tomatoes should be. For all practical purposes, it should say “10 large Tomatoes” because the size and the amount of the other ingredients DOES make a difference! Having said that, I quadrupled this recipe (using the portion converter) since I had 40 very medium Roma tomatoes, cut down on the amount of peppers and carrots, I used chopped baby carrots too since that made it much easier to cut into small pieces. I also threw in 2 dried red chillies (you can get them from the Indian grocery) along with the bay leaves and celery stalks while the whole thing simmered, in order to give it a bit of a kick. I also replaced the Italian spices with fresh thyme and oregano like other posters had recommended. It was superb! It freezes well too and can easily be warmed up and be added with either cooked ground veal or pieces of Italian sausage for a non-vegetarian sauce for later on.
This is a great basic recipe! Easy to follow and easy to do as this was my first attempt to make homemade tomato sauce. I did make changes. I carmalized the onions and omitted the carrots and burgundy. Also, after the sauce had been cooking for two hours, I poured it into the blender to puree it; my kids hate vegetable chunks in their sauce, so I did this to disguise the other veggies! Sneaky, huh. Also, I added salt and used oregano, thyme, and parsley instead of a general Italian seasoning. Overall, this was a great recipe starter for a tasty sauce!
1/3 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
Pinch of red pepper flakes
4 crushed garlic cloves
¾ cup chopped onion (optional)
1 teaspoon fresh chopped oregano, divided, or ½ teaspoon dried
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil, divided, or ½ tablespoon dried
1 teaspoon fresh chopped mint, divided
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 28-ounce cans of whole tomatoes or two quarts of freshly canned garden tomatoes
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesano Reggiano cheese
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Before you begin, pour your two cans of tomatoes into a bowl and crush with your hand. Don’t break them up too small, you want large chunks.
In a large heavy bottomed pot with a lid, on a burner with no flame, pour in olive oil and add red pepper flakes, garlic, onion, most of the oregano, basil and mint (save a little bit of each for the end), sugar salt and pepper. Turn on the burner and slowly bring up to hot. When the onions and garlic start to cook, stir and heat for five minutes.
Remove the pot from the burner and place a heat diffuser over the burner. Place the pot over the heat diffuser and add the tomatoes. Turn burner to medium high and stir until they start to boil. Then reduce to simmer, partially cover and simmer 90 minutes.
After 90 minutes, remove from heat and add the reserved herbs and Parmesan cheese. Add the butter to round out the flavors. Stir again and serve.