Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Tomato Sauce #1

All tomato sauces are not created equally!  We make several different versions. 
This is our favorite to use as a topping for Cabbage Rolls (see recipe this blog).

28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes (no salt added)
14 ½ oz. can of diced tomatoes (no salt added)
3 tbl. olive oil
½ large onion, chopped
½ bell pepper, chopped (about 1 cup)
2 large cloves of garlic, crushed
pinch of brown sugar
/8 tsp. sea salt
Note:  We use all fresh herbs.  If using dried, cut the quantities in half.
½ tbl. fresh basil, chopped
1/8 tsp. fresh Thyme, chopped
½ tbl. fresh Marjoram, chopped
½ tbl. fresh Oregano, chopped
1 tbl. fresh Parsley, chopped
½ tsp. fresh Sage, chopped
2 whole Bay leaves
1 large sprig fresh Rosemary
3 fresh fennel fronds (or 1 tsp. crushed Fennel seed)
1¼ cup red wine

·         In a large Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-low until hot
·         add onions, bell pepper, garlic, brown sugar, salt, and all of the herbs except the Rosemary, Fennel, and Bay leaves
·         Cook for about 10-12 minutes, stirring occassionally
·         Add the red wine and cook another minute or so, then add the tomatoes
·         Swish about a cup of water in the tomato cans and add to the sauce
·         Add the Rosemary sprig to the sauce (will be pulled out later) and bring to a slow simmer
·         Add the Fennel and Bay leaves, simmer another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally
·         Remove the Rosemary sprig and discard
·         Loosely cover the pot (allow to vent) and simmer slowly, about 1 ½ hours, stirring often
·         After about 30 minutes, remove the Fennel fronds (no need if using crushed Fennel seed).  If sauce gets too thick, just add a little water.
·         Remove the Bay leaves (have fun finding them!  J )
·         Remove from heat and set aside until ready to use.

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