However, I was in Germany visiting family recently and Axel made the best pasta sauce and it went together so fast. I couldn't believe how yummy it was and how simple! It is also very forgiving so you can change it up depending on what you have on hand. I don't think I will ever eat store bought sauce again! Seriously...it is that good and so ridiculously easy! I like meals that come together in 20 minutes or less especially on a busy work night or busy weekend!
You can choose to add meat or keep it meatless. In this recipe today I decided to do a meatless sauce because I was trying to do pasta but I also had a request for low carb (no pasta just meat with sauce) so I kept the meat separate in patties. I happen to like the sauce rustic with chunky tomatoes but if you prefer it smooth then you can puree it in a blender or food processor OR buy tomato puree instead of the chunky ones. I like it chunky and I hate to drag out the blender (another thing to clean on a busy work night) if I don't need to do it.
Someone used all my parmesan cheese so I didn't have any to grate on top of the pasta for presentation. Maybe next time. It doesn't really matter though because this is just as yummy without the cheese.
RUSTIC PASTA RECIPE:
- 2 cans of chunky tomatoes (I prefer the fire roasted ones but you can use whatever you have. You can also use a combination of chunky and puree tomatoes. Use whatever type you have). I don't drain it. I add the juice too.
- 1 small can or tube of tomato paste (This is virtually concentrated tomatoes and has a nice, rich, sweet taste. It also thickens the sauce. I highly recommend adding this. If you want your sauce a little less thick you can add just a few tablespoons. If you don't want to use the entire can then I suggest you buy it in a tube so you can put in the refrigerator for another day).
- Pinch of sea salt (I like to use sea salt but you can certainly use regular table salt)
- Pinch of pepper
- Pinch of dried or a few chopped leaves of fresh basil or Italian seasoning blend. Either will work
- Pinch of chili flakes (optional)
- fresh minced garlic (I like to add about 2-3 cloves but you can add more or less depending on your preference).
- Drizzle of olive oil, optional but it really adds a nice flavor and texture to sauce
If you are adding ground beef, pork or turkey then go ahead and pre-cook it until it is crumbled and cooked through. Drain off excess fat. Set aside. I also love this with shrimp or scallops. Drizzle a little bit of olive oil in a skillet and add minced garlic. Skillet should be on medium heat. (I really like using fresh garlic for this. It really brings out the flavor in the sauce). Don't brown the garlic, just drop it in the oil. Add the two cans of chunky tomatoes and the tomato paste. If you want to thin the sauce down a little bit you can add a little bit of water. Add the salt, pepper, basil and chili flakes. Cook until hot and to desired consistency. Add meat if desired. I chose to go for meatless sauce today and do the meat patty on the side. Serve over noodles. I used Ronzoni Gluten Free pasta noodles tonight. They are one of my favorite gluten free pastas.
Refrigerate or freeze leftover sauce. TIP for storing left over noodles: Put in a glass bowl with a lid or ziplock freezer bag. Drizzle a small amount of olive oil on noodles and gently toss. Refrigerate. This keeps the noodles from getting mushy or hard. Re-heat in skillet or microwave and then spoon sauce over left over noodles.
|I like using tomato paste in a tube so I can add what I want and refrigerate the rest.|
|Cooking my sauce in my cast iron skillet|
|My pink sea salt|
|Cooking the sauce until nice & thick|
|Ready to eat|
|Up close view of the thick & chunky sauce|
Feel free to leave comments on any substitutions or things you added to your sauce. We all learn from each other. (I do love adding mushrooms and olives when I am the only one eating the pasta sauce. Not everyone else likes those so I don't add them often).
Tanja @ Gluten Free Casually