Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Home Grown Tomatoes & Red Sauce

Nettuno, Italy where I spent some time in the early 90's. It's an hour from Rome.

Many years ago (early 90's), I had the pleasure of spending some time in Italy (sort of long story that I won't go into now). And, I got to eat with the locals & learn a little bit about how they cook & do things over there. In my mind, I had always thought that the spaghetti sauce that they make must take hours to make (after all, that's how most "real" Italian cooks did it over here, or so I thought). I was very surprised to learn that they use very simple ingredients & it only simmers for 30 min. or so & then they serve it over fresh pasta. I watched & learned from some of those local ladies & brought home my own recipe for fresh pasta sauce. It does help that my mama cans her tomatoes out of their garden too, so she keeps me stocked up on the most flavorful canned tomatoes. I just brought home a new box after our last visit, so I'm good to go.
Our very first tomato from our little backyard garden. I think I picked it too early, cause it wasn't quite juicy enough yet. We are going to let them sit on the vine now until they are good and ripe.
My mama's canned tomatoes. What would I do without these? I use them in my pasta sauce, chili, & anything that calls for chopped tomatoes. They are SO good! My hubby really, really loves my "Rhoda red sauce" , as he calls it. I've spoiled him now & he likes mine much better than any of the restaurants we've been to. So, I thought I'd share with you this simple, fresh marinara sauce that is served at our house at least once a week. A fresh green salad & bread if you'd like, and it's a meal....a very delicious meal! You can add anything to this too...I sometimes add black olives or mushrooms. We don't care for meat sauce & like to keep it simple.

Rhoda's Marinara Sauce

1 large can of chopped/diced tomatoes (32 oz. from the store?) you know the large ones or crushed tom. works too
1 can tomato paste
2-3 TBL EV olive oil
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1 TBL dried basil (Add chopped fresh basil leaves too if you have them)
1 TSP dried oregano
1/4 TSP dried red pepper flakes (to taste)
Salt & Pepper to taste

In saucepan, drizzle olive oil in bottom & heat to medium, press garlic or mince & saute in olive oil for couple of minutes. Add large can tomatoes, along with the tomato paste. Add rest of ingredients, bring to a boil, then lower & simmer for 30 minutes. Serve over fresh pasta. I use thin spaghetti or penne pasta most of the time. Of course, freshly grated Parmean is best, but I'm not opposed to canned. Enjoy!

I think you'll like this! I never have complaints when I've served this pasta sauce & once you make your own, you'll never do canned again. Beats the heck out of Prego or Ragu. Those are so sweet to me now.

Buon Appetito, Ya'll!

Thanks to Donna at The Decorated House for showing me how to change my background. Don't you love it! It's SO me! I may be changing it constantly now.

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36 friends stopped by:

nicole said...

Hello Rhoda! Can I say YuMMO! Thank you for sharing this recipe. I have been searching for a good homemade pasta sauce....Hubby "HATES" store bought sauce. I just know he is going to love this. :-) Can't wait to make it. Thanks agaiN!!
Happy Cooking! Nicole from Cedar Creek Texas

willzmom said...

That sounds delish! I'm putting it on my shopping list for next week. I love your new background. I need to do some "maintenance" myself.

Betty Jo said...

Mmmmmm . . . yummy. And what gorgeous photos Rhoda. My DIL is Italian and makes delicious sauces. I especially love her lasagna.

PAT said...

That does sound yummy, Rhoda! I know what you mean about Ragu or Prego, tasting too sweet! I much prefer, from scratch sauce!

That jar of tomatoes, took me back to my canning days! I really enjoyed canning.

Are ya gonna have a 'mater samich, with those fresh tomatoes?;-)

I love the leopard print!

Back Porch Musings

PAT said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PAT said...

That's my delete. I remember hitting publish once, but it came up twice!!


Francie M. said...

Gonna have spaghetti for supper now! the new look too.

KLKinFLA said...

I'm ready for lunch, and that looks delicious!

the feathered nest said...

You already have red tomatoes! Mine are just teeny and green. All your recipes are delish and I will definately try this one!


Rosemary said...

Hi Rhoda,
That is so close to my own recipe.
I am Italian. I think it depends on what part of Italy you are from.
My mom cooks the sauce all day as my grandmother did. I prefer the quicker method like you.
I add meat to mine sometimes.

Felicia said...

I grew up in the backwoods of Florida between the orange groves, strawberry fields and tomato farms. We always had a seemingly endless supply of mom's home canned tomatoes. Delicious :)

DebraK said...

Home canned tomatoes, I am so GREEN with envy! We grow our own tomatoes but I never seem to have the time or the inclination to can.

I'm going to try that sauce for sure, but I am guilty of liking Ragu.

Love that leopard print...last night it was a black-whiteprint, and tomorrow Missy...what will it be!??!! Have fun changing it. I love to see what you come up with.

Lynne said...

Yummy! I admit I do use store-bought spaghetti sauce as a base, but I doctor it up so much it tastes like homemade! I'll have to try your recipe someday.

Tina Leigh said...

Oh Rhoda there is just no need for you to put those pictures on your blog for ALL to see!! Good night a livin!! I want to twirl my fork in that pasta so bad!! I declare I believe I can smell it....or maybe its the bacon I smell to go with that know the one I want to stick that fresh tomatoe on!!! Good NIGHT!! Someone please get my draw string pants! YUMMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!!!!! PS I'm on my last 5 jars of tomatoes. I'm gettin a little scared I might run out before the new ones are ready! I had some on my grits tonight for supper!! YES!

Southern Heart said...

Yum! I've always wanted to try homemade recipe, and yours sounds wonderful and not too complicated. You were sweet to share it, too.

I'd love to hear about Italy sometime.

I wish I could see your new sounds great!



justabeachkat said...

I love marinara sauce the most. I'd rather not have the meat either. Your sauce is a little different from mine so I'll have to try it. I looooove fresh basil!
I sure wish someone canned tomatoes for me. You lucky girl!

Your background looks very cool!

Anonymous said...

Hi Rhoda,
Your recipe is very much like mine, my Mum is Italian. We add pepperoni & red onion to the garlic & olive red pepper flakes. Then we add the toms. etc. My grandmother & grandfather used to have a garden and put up their own jarred tomatoes. I sure miss those days !!

Mangia Mangia
Kathy =)

Susie Q said...

Oh Italy...*sigh* and we are big pasta eaters here. I have copied your red sauce to try and it does sound so good. Thank you for sharing!

Love your backgrounds! Fun! I still have not figured out how to do that...yours looks great!


Seeker said...

I'm LMBO @ Tina Leigh's comment...she's right, your pictures make my mouth water for tomatoes! Thanks for sharing your sauce recipe...I'm anxious to try it!

lucinda said...

I'm assuming you use the small can of tomato paste?
Looks a lot like how I make my sauce but I have never added paste. I bet that deepens the flavor! Yum Yum Yum!

Sandy McTier said...

Mmmm. That looks delicious! Italy is fabulous isn't it? We took the boys over and travelled by car from Piscara to Rome and it is gorgeous and the food is so good. Thanks for sharing your recipie ~ can't wait to try it out.
Love the new background as well ~ very animalistic!

Tammy518 said...

This sounds delicious, Rhoda! I just printed it out and I'm definitely fixing it soon. I don't usually make meat sauce either, and in fact, my 16-year-old son became a vegetarian a couple of months ago. He'll love this.

Rhoda said...

I'm glad you ladies like red sauce too! I think I might make it again tonight.

And, Lucinda...yes, small can of tomato paste is what I mean.

Hope y'all enjoy & thanks so much for stopping by.

Dorothy said...

Hi Rhonda! You always have such lovely photos to go along with your great posts! No exception here! I can't wait to try this recipe for your sauce. I bet it tastes fabulous! Thanks for sharing it and your talent!

Sandy said...

Yummy Rhoda! Fun, you got your first tomato. I started freezing my tomatoes, roasting them first. I put my recipe on one of my earlier blogs (can't remember which one).
Thanks for sharing :)
For Reluctant Entertainers

Suzanne said...

Yummy, that looks so good, and you already have your first tomato, wow! Thanks for the recipe. :) and your new background template looks great!

FrenchGardenHouse said...

Yummy! Thanks Rhoda, it sounds wonderful...we can always use a great sure to please recipe.

Trying it this weekend with some great tomatoes. I agree with Tina Leigh
"Good night a livin!! "


torirowland said...

Hi Rhoda! Thanks for an awesome recipe and a wonderful blog! It's just a breathe of fresh air to visit you here ever since I saw you on Funky Junk Co.'s blog! I love doing projects just like yall...they are slow but surely tho! As is my new come by for a visit if you can...I've done some fun projects recently. Keep up the great work...I added you to my favorite blogs! I see you are from Ga. too! Still am!

Sheila said...

I'll bet this is so good. I will try it, soon we will have open air farmer markets with fresh tomatoes. (I don't grow them.)
I love your new background, it look great..!

Andi said...

Love your new background! And Rhoda's Red Sauce sounds wonderful. I'll have to give your recipe a try. I like Rosemary's comment about adding meat to her sauce. I'll try that as well.

Naturegirl said...

Thank you Rhoda I am always looking for a new pasta sauce recipe as my boy could eat pasta every day! I'll try yours and get back to you on it!

violetlady said...

I HAVE to have pasta at least once a week. I notice you don't put onions in your sauce. I'll try it that way. When I was in Italy, I think I remember them not putting onions in either. I add some red wine to my sauce. If you want a good, non-sweet, store-bought sauce, try Classico. I often doctor that up -- tastes homemade.

Rabbit Hill Creations said...

Rhoda, that dish looks so family and I are pasta eaters and are always trying new sauces...thanks for sharing your recipe.

Mary said...

Rhoda - thanks for sharing - when my tomatoes come in I'll definitely try the recipe. My garden looks great now - veggies are climbing toward heaven since the wonderful rain this week - and last night it really came down! Today I fertilized as Tue. I leave on vacation - hate to leave my garden when it's growing so fast but hopefully it will survive!
I'll post tomorrow and then be back June 22 to catch up with everyone's news.
Take care - Mary.

Sofia Striffler said...

I know this is an old post but I just read it. I am very italian my dad came to this country when he was 14 and I have never done canned or bottled sauces. Yes I make my sauce very similar but I add ground beef and sauce for a meat flavor. You have to cook that longer since the meat cooks with the sauce but still very good. Enjoy!

mary'smom said...

I think that Italian-American sauce is different because many Italians here are from the southern part of Italy. I think that they cook their sauce longer in the Southern part...I am not sure. There is another recipe using fresh tomatoes...I have to find it for don't cook the tomatoes at all.