Need Help With Pasta Sauce

  1. Well, I knew I'd have to do this sooner or later, I married a man who is 100% Italian, I, on the other hand don't have a bit of Italian blood in me. I have always used "jar" sauce, Ragu, Hunts, whatever is on sale, this, as you all know, is a big "no, no" in an Italian family.
    Do any of you have a fairly simple recipe for pasta sauce?? I've never attempted to make my own sauce, is it hard?
    Any recipe's will be greatly appreciated.
  2. 20 Comments

  3. by   Katnip
    My mom, 50% Irish, 50% Polish made the absolute best spaghetti to my father's mother who was 100% Irish.

    Unfortunately, I never got the hang of it. I do remember they sauteed the garlic and onions until just tender. And the sauce itself was simmered on the back burner for most of the day. Ahhh, the smell. But I don't know what other seasonings she used. Basil maybe?

    I'm convinced the secret is in the very slow cooking.
  4. by   movealong
    Grind up a few fennel seeds to put into the sauce. I'm Italian. Do ya want meatless sauce or sauce with meat???
  5. by   shel_wny
    Try That site is my indulgence this summer.
    I just love trying new recipes and making good food!
    Just search "pasta sauce" or "spaghetti sauce" and you'll find loads of recipes.
    Try to pick one close to 5 stars with lots of reviews and make sure to read the reviews because a lot of these people add a bit of something or leave something out and the hints are very helpful.
    Good luck.

  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    do you want a recipe for a LOT of marinara sauce (this is killer)? let me know...I have a wonderful marinara recipe, but it's for a crowd.
  7. by   oceanblue

    Sure.......what's The Recipe?
  8. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I got this from a place that served killer pasta marinara and I had to have the recipe. (lord I miss Chicago at times, lol).

    It is VERY good. Also, Keep in mind; this freezes well and works great for any pasta, including as a base for lasagne. So if you cannot use it all at once, that is ok, you have plenty of sauce for later on. It tastes even BETTER reheated, if you ask me. Also, you will notice, it is meatless (like most marinaras). You CAN add hot Italian Sausage or ground beef (cooked) to it, if you choose, but the sauce is so full-bodied and so spicy, it' s not necessary. It stands ALONE! Here you go:

    1 1/2 c olive oil
    1 cup garlic, minced
    2 lb onions, chopped
    1 lb carrots, chopped
    1 1/2 c peppers ( I use a variety of red, orange, yellow and green)
    1 lb mushrooms
    2 1/2 lb tomatoes (roma are best but vine- ripened are great too!)--I like to chop them in half for this sauce.
    2 c Red Wine (any kind)
    2 Tablespoons each of Oregano and Basil as well as chili flakes
    I also always dash a bit of sugar in every dish I make---just brings out the flavor somehow.

    You can choose to saute veggies and garlic lightly, first, in enough olive oil to cover the bottom of a pan---I prefer to do this. Then, assemble all ingredients in a large pot, set to low heat and simmer slowly several hours, stirring occasionally. Your house will smell like Heaven, I tell ya. Serve with any pasta, cooked al dente, garlic bread, tossed salad and of course, red wine. Voila! A great Italian feast. Let me know how it works out for you!
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Jul 7, '04
  9. by   Altra
    One tip ... if you prefer a smooth sauce instead of a chunky one, you can still get all the great flavors of onion, garlic, peppers, etc. Just leave them in big chunks, or even just cut in half, cook with the sauce, and pull them out before serving.

    My Polish/Lithuanian hubby was the one who taught me to make sauce. Go figure ... :chuckle

    Happy cooking!
  10. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Very true, MLOS .I like my sauce with bite and body, myself, chunks included ---rofl.

    I also have a great Alfredo recipe, if you want it.
  11. by   Spidey's mom
    Deb - that recipe is close to what I use. I love using fresh tomatoes for sauce.

    My 19 year old HATES chunks in his sauce so I take some out and put it in the blender on pulse until most of the chunks have been reduced enough for him to eat. You cannot blend it alot though - just hit pulse a few times. Still has the flavor of the chunks but not the chunks. :chuckle

    One of my favorite sauces uses shredded carrots as a replacement for meat. It is sweet though and lots of folks don't like a sweet sauce.

    I love trying different recipes for sauces . . . . always experiment. My family prefers the hamburger sauce though.

  12. by   prmenrs
    I have made a meat sauce that has evolved over the years; it makes enough to freeze for leftovers. Start this in the morning.

    Brown 1 1/2 #s of lean ground beef and 1/2 # of Italian sausage--hot or mild, your choice. Drain if necessary. Add chopped onions and garlic--@ least 1 large onion and 3-4 cloves of garlic. (I have used garlic and onion powder, don't tell anyone). Then add a large can of tomato sauce and a large can of diced, peeled tomatoes-I think they're 28 oz each. Add 2 tbs oregano, rosemary, crushed bay leaves, and any other herb in your cupboard that smells like it might belong in the sauce. Yeah, I really did smell them all. Or, make it easy, buy the "Italian Seasoning" and throw in a handful.

    Let this cook ~ 2 hours on a very low heat; add some (at least 1 cup, more later) red wine; cook some more. Stir frequently. After 2 more hours, add 12 oz can tomato concentrate, stir well. Taste it any time you want. You can add some more wine if you want, and/or drink some yourself. This is hard work you know! Cook for an hour or 2 more.

    At this point it's ready to serve anytime you want. Candlelight, music--who knows what's for dessert?
  13. by   Angela Mac
    I grow about 120 tomato plants every year and can my own sauce

    fresh tomatoes
    sea salt
    olive oil *never forget the olive oil*
  14. by   Tweety
    If the words "It's not like mamma's" or "not as good as mamma's" comes out of his mouth, hit him over the head with a pot and leave him forever immediately.