Prep 15 mins
Cook 1 hr
This is a full-flavored rich tomato sauce that benefits with a long slow cooking time, this sauce will take a couple of hours to cook and will only improve in flavor if made 1-3 days ahead and refrigerated, this will give the flavors time to blend and intensify even more, I also want to mention that the sauce will taste totally different after the 2-1/2 hour cooking time, when I make this sauce I use 1/2 cup cream, you will need to adjust the cream until you have reached the desired taste------------- to take this to yet another level 1 pound mild or spicy Italian sausages with casings removed may be added to the sauce, see instructions on the bottom of the recipe --- you will love this sauce! :)
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil (or as needed to cover the bottom of the saucepan)
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped (do not substitute green or yellow pepper)
- 2 -3 tablespoons finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil (can use more)
- 2 -3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh garlic (the more garlic the better!)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (or adjust to suit heat level)
- 1 tablespoon dried basil (rubbed between fingers to release flavors)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes (or use two 14-ounce cans)
- 1 (28 ounce) can plum tomatoes (do not drain)
- 2 1⁄2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
- fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
- 1⁄3 cup heavy whipping cream (or more to desired creaminess)
- Heat oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat (use enough oil to cover the bottom of your pot you may need more than 1/4 cup).
- Add in onion, bell pepper and chopped sun-dried tomatoes; cook stirring for about 5-6 minutes or until softened.
- Add in garlic, chili flakes and basil; cook stirring for 2 minutes,.
- Add in tomato paste; stir for 2 minutes.
- Add in crushed and plum tomatoes with juice; bring to a simmer over medium heat stirring and breaking up the whole tomatoes with a fork.
- Reduce heat to low cover with a lid and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Uncover and continue to simmer over low heat for another 2 hours stirring frequently (the longer cooking/simmering time over low heat the better this sauce will be, if your sauce becomes too thick add in a little water and continue cooking).
- Season with salt and black pepper about halfway through cooking.
- At this point and before the addition of the cream you may cool the sauce and refrigerate up to 3 days.
- At the end of cooking mix in the cream starting with 1/3 cup and adding in more until you reach your desired creaminess; stir until heated through.
- THE ADDITION OF SAUSAGE MEAT; in the pot brown the sausage meat with onion, bell pepper and sun-dried tomatoes until no longer pink (breaking up the meat while cooking) drain fat.
- Add in the garlic, red pepper flakes and basil; cook stirring until the meat is browned (about 7-8 minutes, or best flavor the meat should be lightly browned).
- Add in the tomato paste and continue with the recipe as stated from step# 5.
Mmmm mmmm! This is so good! I left out the bell pepper due to tummy issues and other than adding more red pepper that is the only change I made! DH loved this and asked for extra sauce on his noodles which he NEVER does normally he likes the bare minimum amount of sauce! We used a little less than 1/3 cup of cream because that was what I had left but the creaminess really came through! I served my portion meatless over penne pasta and to DH's portion I added cooked shrimp! Mmmmm! Thanks for posting! Will for SURE make again!!!
Pretty good stuff....the BF loved it even though he strongly dislikes "traditional" sauce :0) Also made the meatballs from kittencals, equally yummy (didn't quite mend well but they worked when she said NOT to stir while simmering..... GOOD TIP!)......I did not have a red pepper, the sundried tomatoes or the whipping cream but it was still good after the 2 hour simmer process. that's my only complaint, is my lack of patience!