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If you prefer a smooth texture for your sauce, either peel the tomatoes before chopping them or run the sauce through a food mill before stirring in the basil. You can easily double (or triple) this sauce. It freezes beautifully for up to 6 months.

This Story Originally Appeared On sunset.com

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Credit: Annabelle Breakey

Recipe Summary

total:
45 mins
Yield:
Makes sauce for 1/2 lb. spaghetti
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Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Core and halve tomatoes. Remove seeds (either scoop them out with a spoon or hold a half in your hand and squeeze out the seeds) and cut tomatoes into 1/2-in. dice. Set aside.

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  • Thinly slice garlic. In a 10- to 12-in. frying pan over low heat, cook garlic in olive oil until it is soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes.

  • Add tomatoes and 1 tsp. salt and increase heat to medium-high. Cook until tomatoes give off their liquid and start to bubble. Reduce heat to medium-low or low, so the sauce gently simmers. Cook, uncovered and undisturbed, until oil separates from the sauce and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 30 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, chop basil. When sauce is done, stir in basil and add salt to taste.

  • Variations

  • Butter it up: Use unsalted butter in place of the olive oil and a chopped medium onion in place of the garlic.

  • Explore the herb patch: Try 1/2 to 1 tsp. minced fresh oregano, marjoram, rosemary, or thyme instead of the basil.

  • Add some heat: Toss in 2 or 3 dried whole arbol chiles with the garlic for a slightly spicy version. Remove chiles before serving.

  • Pick more produce: At the beginning of step 3, add one skinned and chopped medium eggplant and cook until soft, about 10 minutes, before adding the tomatoes.

  • Note: Nutritional analysis is per 1/2 cup.

Nutrition Facts

54 calories; calories from fat 72%; protein 0.8g; fat 4.3g; saturated fat 0.6g; carbohydrates 4.1g; fiber 1.1g; sodium 241mg.
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