Hey hi! Happy Wednesday!
We’re back with another installment of Cooking Basics. I’ve been loving sharing these since they are quite literally the foundations of my own personal kitchen and you’ve been loving them, too! So it’s a mutual love.
Today we have the sauce that has won my heart and a place in my kitchen nearly weekly since sometime last year: 30 minute tomato butter marinara. GUYSSSSSSS this sauce is heaven. It requires 5 ingredients, next to no prep and very little hands on time. It also doesn’t require hours of simmering to taste incredible which means it’s total weeknight pasta sauce perfection.
I use this sauce for EVERYTHING. Well, everything that requires a tomato based sauce like pasta, lasagna, stuffed shells (coming sooooooon), pizza, quick tomato-y stews (see: tomato basil chickpeas and spinach) and so on.
You’re totally going to fall in love with it and use it for everything, too. I swear. Ok here we gooooooooo!
Gather your ingredients…
Then remove the skins from the garlic and crush them. Aka, put them on a cutting board, lay a large chefs knife flat over them and then use the hell of your hand to crush them against the knife. This helps flavors get released.
Heat the olive oil in your pot over medium-high heat then toss the garlic in. Stir it around for about a minute or two or until the smell of garlic is very fragrant.
Throw the can of tomatoes in the pot and carefully crush the tomatoes with your hands. The tomatoes get hot quickly so be careful. Also, you can crush them in a bowl before you add them in to the pot but I never do this because I don’t always use logic and because it would dirty another bowl.
Stir the garlic and olive oil in to the tomatoes and reduce heat to a simmer. Allow the sauce to simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring every now and then but it doesn’t need much attention if you use an electric stove. IF you use a gas range, you will 100% need to babysit the sauce more. Stir it relatively frequently to prevent burning. This doesn’t really happen with electric.
After 20 minutes, throw in 2 tbsp of butter. Yes, 2 tbsp. Do not dare reduce it. Add some salt and taste. Adjust the salt to your liking and if necessary throw in a tsp or so of sugar. This is largely dependent on the quality of your tomatoes. Some tomatoes are more acidic and need a bit of sugar to smooth them out and some are smoother on their own. Use your own judgement with your tastes.
Once it’s where you like it, throw in 1/2 cup or more of shredded fresh basil. You can also throw in a bunch of parmesan/asiago if you fancy that (I sometimes do, sometimes don’t. Depends what I’m using the sauce for).
There you go! Use it immediately for pasta/lasagna/pizza/insert other carb thing here or store it in the fridge for later use. There’s a super delish stuffed shell recipe coming your way Friday!
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 4 cloves of garlic, smashed
- 1 28oz can whole san marzano tomatoes in tomato sauce
- 2 Tbsp butter
- salt, to taste
- sugar, to taste, if necessary
- ½ cup shredded fresh basil
- Heat olive oil in a medium pot over medium high heat.
- Add the garlic cloves and saute for 1-2 minutes or until very fragrant.
- Carefully add the tomatoes and crush by hand OR crush them in to a bowl before adding to the pot.
- Stir it up, cover with a lid and reduce to a simmer.
- Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring every so often if you use an electric stove. If you use gas, stir it frequently to prevent burning.
- Add butter, salt to your tastes and optional sugar if your tomatoes are a touch acidic.
- Add the basil and remove the garlic cloves.
- Use in a variety of recipes or simply poured over your favorite pasta with plenty of cheese and a drizzle of basil pesto.
Sauce will keep for 5-7 days in the fridge.
Oh and here’s the recipes on the site that use this sauce!