Mom's Spaghetti Sauce

Recipe by Wally Wilkins
READY IN: 2hrs 30mins
YIELD: 2 quarts




  • Cut celery and onion (and bell pepper if used) as fine as you prefer.
  • If you like chunky style sauce make the pieces bigger, I like mine chopped fairly small.
  • In a large skillet, heat 1-2 tblspn of oil, when oil is hot (not smoking) add celery and stirfry.
  • As celery begins to clarify, add onion (and bell pepper, if used) and stirfry until it begins to glaze, add chopped garlic, stir for a short time (don't let anything begin to brown).
  • If using meat, add ground beef or stew beef and brown, stirring regularly, adjust heat to make sure nothing burns.
  • Salt and black pepper to taste.
  • Transfer to a larger pot (if you have a good sized pot that you can brown in, you can just start with that instead of using the skillet.).
  • Stir in tomato paste and cook until the color darkens.
  • Stir in tomatos and tomato sauce.
  • Add spices (Italian seasoning or individual spices) to taste.
  • Add 3 Bay Leaves.
  • Stir in mushrooms and/or black olives and crushed red pepper, if desired.
  • Stir in 1-2 cans of water (I use the tomato paste, tomato and tomato paste cans to get the leavings out of them.).
  • Adjust heat to simmer.
  • Let cook for at least 1 hour, longer if you can, and stir regularly.
  • Check spice to taste and add what you want.
  • You can cook this for a little while or for a longer time.
  • I prefer at least 2 hours to give all the spices a chance to blend well.
  • But it can be cooked for as little as a half hour.
  • If you want it to cook for a long time, monitor the thickness and add water as needed.
  • Don't forget to remove the Bay Leaves before serving.
  • Some people like to add a pinch of sugar to cut the acidity, but I believe that the Bay Leaves accomplish this and have never used sugar.
  • When done, serve over or mix with the cooked pasta of your choice.
  • Add grated parmissan if desired.
  • Also individuals can add crushed red pepper to their own servings, for those who like it a little spicier.
  • If making a baked dish such as Lasagna, Ziti, etc.
  • you may want to make the sauce a little thinner (add water) to start with.