San Marzano Tomato Sauce


2 Tablespoons olive oilIMG_1683

1 medium onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

2-3 anchovy fillets*

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (adjust to taste)

1 ( 32 ounce) can San Marzano whole plum tomatoes*

2 tablespoons lightly torn  fresh basil

1/4 cup young red wine (such as a  Chianti)

Salt and pepper to taste

Balsamic vinegar to taste



1.  Add oil to a large pot and heat over medium heat.

2.  Add onion and saute until light golden in color ( 10 minutes).

3.. Add garlic and red pepper flakes, saute until fragrant, ( 30 seconds)*

4.  Add tomatoes, anchovies and wine; bring sauce to a simmer.

5.  Cook sauce until tomatoes start to soften, about 15 minutes.

6.  Using an Immersion hand blender, process sauce  to a  smooth consistency.

7.  Season with salt and pepper. Stir in fresh basil; add balsamic vinegar if desired.

8.  Keep warm until ready to use.


* Note

If you use an Immersion blender, the anchovies will dissolve in the sauce. The anchovies blend into the sauce so well , you don’t really know they are there.

Only use San Marzano tomatoes for this recipe.  They are sweet ( non acidic ) . Do not burn the garlic, 30 seconds is plenty of time especially if your pan is hot.

If you do not have an Immersion blender, use the back of a spoon or a potato masher.   Do not use the blender after you add the fresh basil. Only tear your basil leaves or use a light Chiffonade; the basil will brown or darken.

You might want to double this recipe, depending on what you are making. This recipe will make  make enough to cover at least one recipe of the ricotta gnocchi.





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