Preheat pot (I like a non stick pot) with olive oil. Diced up onion and mince garlic. Add to the pot and saute until cooked thru but not browned. Add the oregano, parsley, red pepper flakes (optional), bay leaves and basil (if using fresh basil, wait until sauce is already simmering). Add the sugar and red wine. Let the red wine reduce a bit. Add in the tomato paste and mix well with the other ingredients already in the pot. Let it kind of "melt" before adding the crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce. I add 1 can at a time to allow for easier blending. Add the water, stir. Cover and bring to a simmer then reduce heat to low. Put a lid on it and fugghetaboutit for a while! Stir occasionally to avoid it burning at the bottom of the pot. I would let it simmer for a minimum of 4 hours -- Make sure to fish out the bay leaves before serving!
Serve with pasta and top with parmesean cheese or use my fave-fried bread crumbs!
Dalla mia cucina alla tua! (From my kitchen to yours!).