Marinara Sauce: a 50 Year Old Classic

You Will Not Believe How Simple This Marinara is to Make

One of My Treasured Cookbooks — Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking

With Over 9,000 “Likes” and 1,000 Comments on the New York Times cooking site, Marcella Hazan proved decades ago only a few ingredients make a restaurant quality sauce.

Over the years I have come to understand that canned tomatoes are probably the best ingredient to use in cooking. They are picked at peak ripeness and immediately preserved. Raw tomatoes are nearly impossible to choose for flavor, that’s why so many restaurant cooks prefer canned for the best results.

That said, you can easily buy crappy canned tomatoes. My philosphy: buy really good canned tomatoes and make a marinara that will cost more to buy in a jar—if you got an hour of time.

INGREDIENTS: This is all Marcella found essential; BUT adjust for additional flavors after you make the original. This can be done after the sauce is done simmering: sugar, basil, red wine

  • peeled tomatoes – 28 oz can, [San Marzano or Romas with juice]
  • butter – 5 TBS [original called for 8 TBS, if you like]
  • onion – 1, halved through the poles
  • salt – [start with 1/2 tsp] then adjust at the end

INSTRUCTIONS: Can be frozen or use within a few days

  1. Add all four ingredients to a sauce pan: break up the tomatoes with your hands or a fork
  2. Stir from time to time and mash any large pieces of tomato, for about 45 minutes—when the oil separates from the tomatoes
  3. Remove the onion and save for another use; taste for seasoning
  4. Enjoy as a pasta sauce, or for any classic marinara infused dish
Served With Bronzed Mushrooms and Parmesan Cheese

Recipe by Marcella Hazan

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