Why bother to buy a jar of marinara sauce when it is so easy to make using basic ingredients you already have in the cupboard? And you can guarantee that you have the classic recipe as used in the south of Italy without the onions and butter sometimes added to commercial brands. Sometimes life’s greatest pleasures are the most simple.
- 2 tins plum tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 8 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ teaspoon of dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- 1 tablespoon of chopped basil leaves
Empty the tomatoes into a bowl and crush between your hands. Add 100ml / 3½ fluid ounces of water to each tin, slosh around and then add this water to the bowl.
In a wide pan heat the oil over a medium heat and add the garlic and saute for about 30 seconds so that it is turning golden (but not brown as it will go bitter).
Add the contents of the tomato bowl, the oregano and salt and stir.
Bring to the boil then simmer for 20 minutes, adding the basil for the last couple of minutes.
Serve as a sauce with pasta or as part of a recipe.
Marinara (Italian for mariner’s) sauce originated in Naples but has strong connections with the Americas. It is widely found in Italian-American cuisine. It’s thought that cooks on Neapolitan ships returning from the Americas invented the sauce in the mid-16th century after the Spanish discovered tomatoes. Another theory is that it was invented by the Italian wives of the mariner’s to greet them on their return. The first mention of a tomato sauce appeared in a recipe book published in two volumes between 1692 and 1694 by Antonio Latini who was Steward of the First Minister tp the Spanish Viceroy of Naples.