Saturday, December 3, 2011

Simple Tomato Sauce

Earlier this year I shared my recipe for a quick Fifteen Minute Tomato Sauce. When I have a little extra time in the kitchen I like to make a big batch of this simple tomato sauce. It freezes beautifully and is perfect for those days when I am feeling particularly lazy busy. The original recipe calls for pureeing the sauce smooth in a food processor but I like to use my stick/immersion blender so the sauce has a little texture.

Simple Tomato Sauce
recipe slightly adapted from Giada De Laurentiis

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 (28-ounce) cans peeled 
San Marzano tomatoes 
4 to 6 basil leaves
2 dried bay leaves
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, optional

Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch casserole over medium high heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes. Add celery and carrots and season with salt and pepper. Sauté until all the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, basil, and bay leaves and simmer covered on low heat for 1 hour or until thick. Remove the bay leaves. 

Using a stick/immersion blender, puree the sauce and season with salt and pepper, if needed. If sauce tastes acidic, add unsalted butter, 1 tablespoon at a time to round out the flavors.

If not using all the sauce, allow it to cool completely and pour 1 to 2 cup portions into ziptop freezer bags or other freezer-safe containers. You can freeze the sauce for up to 6 months.

Yield: 6 cups