This January, I went through my recipe repertoire to pull out some of the most useful ones I’ve come across this past year. One of them is Marcella Hazan’s simple tomato sauce – made with canned tomatoes, onion and butter, it’s among the best classic red sauces I’ve ever had. Once you’ve had the satisfaction of simmering a pot, you may never go back to the jarred stuff. I love warming the kitchen on a cold Sunday with a pot of real tomato sauce, perfect for stashing in the fridge for meals all week long – or in the freezer for the month.
The original recipe calls for plum tomatoes packed in extra puree – if you can find it, use it. When I double this (which is what I usually do) I use 1 can of plum tomatoes and 1 of pureed tomatoes – it works perfectly.
Marcella Hazan’s Tomato Sauce
1 28 oz. can plum tomatoes
5 Tbsp butter
1 small white onion, peeled and cut in half
a big pinch of coarse salt
In a large saucepan or small pot, bring the tomatoes, butter, onion and salt to a simmer. Cook, crushing the tomatoes lightly with the back of a spoon, for about 45 minutes. Remove and discard the onion. Or puree the lot – onion and all – until perfectly smooth.
Serve over hot pasta with Parmesan. Serves 6.