Marinara Sauce

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Generally I like to post recipes as soon as I can. What I mean is as soon as I perfect the recipe. I like to write it down as soon as possible. That way it is no longer inside of me screaming to get out. Not so with this recipe. I started making homemade Marinara sauce last year. I am sorry to say I kind of kept it to myself.  I had a bountiful crop of tomatoes last year so I did a lot of canning and freezing. Not so much this year. I have been at the mercy of friends and family who love to share with me their excess.

Although fresh tomatoes are best, sometimes in the middle of the winter we do not have access to them. The hothouse varieties they sell  in the grocery store just will not do.   I made some Marinara Sauce with canned tomatoes and it turned out delicious. Once I even mixed fresh with canned, and to be honest I do not think anyone knew the difference. This is perfect for Spaghetti, Lasagna and other recipes where spaghetti sauce is used. I also like to put it on pizza and as a dipping sauce for Mozzarella sticks.

I think everyone should have a basic marinara Sauce in their back pocket. This is mine, but sometimes I may add red wine or other stuff that I may have in my pantry.

I do hope you will try to use this recipe as a jumping off point and then customize it to make it your own.

Marinara Sauce

Ingredients:

1/2 cup olive oil
1 medium onion minced
2 cloves garlic minced
2 stalks celery minced
2 carrots minced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
8 cups peeled and seeded tomatoes
or
2 (32) oz cans crushed tomatoes
2 bay leaves

Directions:

In a large pot heat the olive oil and add the onions and garlic, allow them to sweat for about 10 minutes. Add the celery, carrots, salt and pepper. Cook another 10 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.
Add the tomatoes and bay leaves and allow to simmer on the stove about an hour to thicken up.
Remove the bay leaves and discard when finished. Taste to adjust seasonings. Sometimes I will add a tablespoon sugar if needed.
This can be stored in the refrigerator for several days if covered and refrigerated.

I like to freeze mine in ziplock bags. I usually do about 3 cups per bag. If you can these use clean jars and use a water bath for about 10 minutes.
The frozen stuff should last about 6 months in the freezer. The canned stuff about a year. To be honest though, I use mine up way before that.

Peace be with you,

Vonnie