Spaghetti Sauce, By Way Of Nancy's Nana
Ironically, this is NOT my mother’s spaghetti sauce! Although hers was always a family favorite, I’ve grown to like mine more. Several years back, mom admitted to my daughter that the “secret ingredient” in her sauce was a jar of Prego, hysterical! Nothing against Prego, or my beloved mama, but this sauce is so much better. A dear friend’s Nana passed down this recipe, and I’ve happily made it for many years. Not for nothing, my mom was 100% Irish and Nana was 100% Armenian, which just goes to show you, the melting pot always simmers up some fine cooking.
1 large can of tomato puree (28 oz)
3 small cans of tomato paste (6 oz each)
One small onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, peeled, either crushed or minced
Red pepper flakes
Using a large sauce pan, sauté the chopped onion in 1 tbsp. of olive oil over medium heat until it’s transparent and soft
Add the crushed garlic (you can mince the garlic if you don’t have a garlic press)
Sauté for a couple more minutes, don’t let the garlic burn
Add the tomato puree, the 3 cans of tomato paste, and 1 ½ large cans of water (use the tomato puree can)
Whisk until the tomato sauce is smooth and all the paste lumps have dissolved
Add 2-3 tbsp. each of oregano and basil. It will feel like a lot, but it offers nice flavor
Add 2 bay leaves
Add just a shake of red pepper flakes, for a little heat (optional)
Bring the sauce to a brief boil and then reduce heat to a low simmer for 1-2 hours.