Saucy! (Basic Delicious Tomato Sauce)

Saucy! (Basic Delicious Tomato Sauce)

I have been making this basic sauce for over twenty years. It is fast and delicious, and once it is made, you can do all kinds of recipe renditions with it. My husband, Wayne, loves this sauce. He affectionately calls it “Saucy!”. In fact, I don’t think that I have ever met another person in my walk on this planet who loves pasta and tomato sauce as much as he does! Amazingly, he is of Scotch and German descent. I am of Italian descent, and I don’t get half as excited. He loves garlic, also, and he admitted that his mother was Southern and did not cook with very much garlic. Well, I decided not to try to figure this out too much. I have a very appreciative audience for my cooking, and that is just fine with me. There is no greater compliment, I am sure you will agree, than when someone leaves a clean plate and made yummy noises throughout the journey. He is also very wonderful about eating gluten free pasta along with me. Every now and then, I boil two different pastas, but again, thankfully, Wayne is easy to please and adventurous when it comes to trying a new type of food.Simple Sauce

Please do pass up that jarred stuff, darling, and try this!

1 large yellow onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
¼ cup olive oil
2 Large cans crushed tomatoes (28 oz size)
(I prefer Muir Glen)
Large handful of fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon sugar
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Freshly ground sea salt to taste

In large, heavy saucepan, sauté onions in olive oil over low heat until soft and transparent (about 5 minutes of cooking). Add garlic. Sauté another minute in sizzling onions and oil.

Whirl up crushed tomatoes one can at a time in blender. Leave it somewhat chunky. Pour over onion and garlic mixture in saucepan. Add basil, sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to a strong simmer for about 20 minutes to half an hour.

Some people like to add other herbs such as oregano and Italian flat leaf parsley. You can experiment with different herbs. We like just basil. It adds a certain sweetness to the sauce when left solo. You can also add a skosh more of olive oil, if you would like. It is all according to your taste.

Makes a large pot of sauce. You can have some for dinner and freeze the rest for another meal.

We enjoyed this sauce today over Tinkyada Rice Penne Pasta with freshly shaved parmigiana cheese. Enjoy!



Chilly Day Tuscan Soup Pot

Tuscan soup and gluten free French rolls

A hearty one-dish meal for those wintry evenings.  We even have some of those bone chilling days in Orlando, Florida.  Wayne and I welcome a bowl of this steamy, delicious soup packed with a variety of vegetables and beans.  As an accompaniment, I love Gillian’s French gluten free rolls, toasted and buttered (pictured above).


4 Tablespoons good quality olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 large stalks celery, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
3 large carrots, diced
3 cans of beans, your choice, kidney, chick peas, or cannellini
3 cups washed and torn escarole leaves
1 large (28 oz) can whole tomatoes, diced (I love Dei Fratelli brand-close to fresh)
Bay leaf
1/2-1 teaspoon dried thyme, to your taste
1/2 cup fresh chopped Italian parsley
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1-2 precooked chopped Italian sausages
3 quarts chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste


In a large soup pot, saute onion, celery, garlic and carrot together for several minutes, until flavors emerge.

Add beans, broth, and seasonings.

Add torn escarole leaves  once soup starts to simmer.

Add sausage and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Bring to boil, then lower heat, and simmer for about 1 hour.

Check your seasoning and adjust.

Serve piping hot in soup bowls and shave some fresh Parmigiana on top.