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.