I can’t remember the last time I bought a bottle of ketchup, or a jar of sauce for pasta/Bolognese or whatever. It is so simple to make a delicious, tasty, healthy, free-from- colourings/preservatives etc. sauce that I always have an ample supply in my freezer.
I freeze it in small tubs or medium-sized tubs ready for when I need either a small quantity to serve with a meal; perhaps for the grand-kids who like a dip; or for when I make a Bolognese or a pasta dish (I’ve found this super quinoa based pasta which is ideal for my husband who is gluten-intolerant). I also use it to spread on my pizza bases before adding all the other ingredients.
The main problem is that my tomato sauce is rarely exactly the same twice as I tend to use up the vegetables I have in my fridge or vegetable rack. I follow a very basic recipe and have never yet been disappointed. You can make the sauce with or without onions, with or without fresh chillis; if you have a glut of fresh tomatoes, use them instead of tins/boxes. I have even made this sauce using up some grated carrot and it blended in so well. You can also choose how ‘hot’ you want the sauce by varying the amount of pepper/chilli/chilli seeds.
Good splash of olive oil
4 to 6 garlic cloves, sliced
2 or 3 onions, red or white
Red or green chilli or some chilli flakes
2 or 3 tins/boxes of good quality plum tomatoes
Freshly ground black pepper
Hot paprika pepper
Handful of fresh oregano or basil
Heat the olive oil in a good-sized saucepan and add the garlic and onions and fry gently. Add the chopped red pepper and chopped chilli. De-seed the chilli if you don’t want your sauce too hot. Gently cook until the garlic, onions and pepper are slightly soft.
Add the tomatoes and chopped herbs and simmer gently for five to ten minutes.
Take off the heat and blitz in the saucepan. Season to taste.
Put the saucepan back on the heat and gently simmer for a few more minutes to allow the flavours to concentrate fully.
Cool and store in the fridge, or freeze in small portions.
I bought the little 2″ cubed containers in the USA whilst visiting my son and they are such a convenient size, I must try and find some more in this country.