Making your own marinara sauce is easy, and your guests will notice the difference from store bought sauce. The key to a good sauce is, of course, you guessed it, the tomatoes. Start with about 2 lbs. of vine-ripened tomatoes. Cooking your sauce on a low heat setting for an hour or two will make sure your spices are integrated into the tomatoes and will make for thick and tasty sauce that will be mouth-watering on any pasta dish.
2 lbs. vine-ripened tomatoes
1 large onion chopped fine
1 tbsp. olive oil
3 cloves garlic chopped fine
1 stalk celery chopped fine
2 tbsp. Italian seasoning
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. black pepper
Bring water to a boil in a 4-quart pot. Drop in 2 lbs. of vine-ripened tomatoes when the water comes to a boil, and boil the tomatoes for 2 minutes.
Remove the tomatoes from the pot by straining the water from them in a strainer. Rinse the tomatoes with cold water while they are still in the strainer.
Peel the skins off the tomatoes, and cut out the centers where the stems were in the tomatoes.
Add 1 tbsp. of olive oil to the pot, and sauté 1 large onion chopped fine, 3 gloves of garlic chopped fine and 1 stalk of celery chopped fine until the sautéed mixture is transparent.
Add the peeled tomatoes and 2 tbsp. of Italian seasoning to the sauté mixture, and heat until boiling.
Crush up the tomatoes with the spoon you are stirring the mixture with, and add 1 6 oz. can of tomato paste and 1 can of water (use the empty tomato paste can to measure the water) to the mixture.
Add 1 tsp. of salt, sugar and black pepper to your sauce, and cook it over low heat until the sauce thickens (approximately 1 to 2 hours), stirring it occasionally.
Add more salt and/or pepper and/or sugar to taste if you think your sauce needs it.
Use a wooden spoon to stir the marinara sauce because wooden spoons do not conduct heat as do metal ones, so they won’t burn your fingers.
Beware of burning your marinara sauce by cooking it on too high of a heat setting or not stirring it occasionally.