When I was a newlywed with a pregnant wife, it dawned on me what my life had been leading up to: the ability to feed my family, to turn the making of a fragrant, nourishing bowl of pasta with red sauce into an act of the most sincere love. When done right, a red sauce like this can make you feel alive.
Something as simple as a red sauce goes well with perfectly cooked dried pasta. If you stick to a sturdy, reliable imported Italian brands like De Cecco or Barilla, you’ll be in good shape.–Gabriele Corcos and Debi Mazar
LC What Folks Are Saying About This Recipe Note
“Simple, quick, and delicious.” “Elegant in its simplicity.” “This is not Sunday gravy but it sure as heck is good.” “I’m filing this recipe away to make again…repeatedly.” That’s what folks are saying about this red sauce recipe. [Ed. note: For those of you concerned that we’re mentioning Barilla, a brand that was taken to task in 2013 for indelicate treatment of gay couples, the company has spent the past two years making amends, and the human RightCamapign has given Barilla a 100 on Corporate Equality Index. And that’s good enough for us.]
Red Sauce | Sugo di Pomodoro
- Quick Glance
- 15 M
- 45 M
- Makes enough for 1 pound of pasta
- 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/3 red onion, cut into medium dice
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- Pinch hot red pepper flakes (optional)
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons torn basil leaves
- 1. If you prefer a smooth red sauce, dump the tomatoes and their juices in a food processor or stick an immersion blender in the opened can and purée the tomatoes until smooth. If you prefer a red sauce with a chunky consistency, don’t do anything to the tomatoes just yet. Instead, wait and break the tomatoes up in the pan with a wooden spoon.
- 2. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat until hot. Add the onion and cook until softened, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until you see the color start changing. If your prefer your red sauce with a little kick, add the red pepper flakes.
- 3. Dump in the tomatoes and season with salt and black pepper. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes, until the sauce is reduced slightly. (If you did not purée the tomatoes, use a wooden spoon to break them into pieces while they cook.) Add the basil and remove the pan from the heat. You should have sufficient red sauce to toss with a pound of pasta.