Monday, October 08, 2007

Marinara Sauce | America's Test Kitchen

Ok. I know. Marinara Sauce, I've been gone for a week and all you get from me is f'ing marinara sauce. But it's really good, I swear, some of the best marinara sauce to ever grace your lips, so shut up and try it.

Life's been busy to say the least, it seems that every time I turn around another one of my friends has just given birth to another kid. It's no wonder we as a world are facing a population crisis, people are copulating and reproducing like rabbits, I swear. Except for in Russia it seems because just a few weeks ago they had what can only be termed, a stay home and mate until you make a baby damn it day. It seems that the birth rate in Russia is dangerously low, I think it's actually in the negative territory as far as births versus deaths which just seems weird to me because its seems wherever I go there are a veritable shit ton of newborns surrounding me. Its like I'm in a weird caricature and there's me and then all around me there are these little babies, and then hoards of pregnant people and then all the baby accouterments. Its weird.

If I seem harsh I don't mean to be, it's just that when you are in your prime, and happily married people always assume that your next big step in life is to get pregnant, when, in reality, my next big step in life it to try to find enough time to sit the fuck down. I am running crazy everywhere everyday and I just want to sit down without feeling guilty about what I am not doing because I have decided to stop moving for one minute. The other day CB asked why I looked a little stressed out and my only reply was because I felt like it had been at least three months since I had sat down. Now I know that's being over dramatic, but that is how I feel, go go go until you can't go anymore or you have a stroke, and I'm not sure which one is going to come first, so I'm feeling a little stressed and stretched thin.

So, back to the origin of this conversation, the babies, no I don't want to have children, yes, I'm happy as shit for my friends who have just had them, or are pregnant or are trying to get pregnant, but I don't want to have kids, I don 't particularly like wiping my own ass, nevermind someone elses, so let's just leave it there for now. When I'm not so tired, and not in such a heightened state of stress I will explain my mindset and where my heart is in the whole family planning arena, but for now, just know, I'm happy for all the moms, but more happy that I'm not one. And I saw Knocked Up this weekend, and I never need to experience childbirth, ever. I think I'm pretty tough for running three marathons, and I'm sticking to that being the most pain I have ever felt, I don't really need to experience the whole crowning time that takes place during childbirth, no thank you maam.

Oh, wait, did you come here for a recipe and not a diatribe on childbirth, well, I aim to please. Here you go.

Marinara Sauce
2 (28 ounce) cans whole tomatoes packed in juice
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion minced
2 medium garlic cloves minced
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/3 cup dry red wine
ground black pepper
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil (for serving)

1. Pour tomatoes into strainer set over a large bowl. Using your hands, open the tomatoes and discard any fibrous cores, skins, seeds, being careful to keep the tomato meats whole; let the tomatoes drain for five minutes. Remove 3/4 cup pf the tomatoes from the strainer, set side in a small bowl. Reserve 2 1/2 cup of the tomato juice and discard the remainder of the juice.

2. Heat 2 tbsp of the olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium heat until simmering but not smoking. Add the onion and tbsp salt and cook until softened and lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the garlic and oregano and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

3. Add the tomatoes from the strainer and increase the heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to stick to the bottom of the pan and a brown glaze forms around the pan edges, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the wine and cook until thick and syrupy, about 1 minute. Add the reserved tomato juice and bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook stirring occasionally, until th sauce is thick 8 to 10 minutes.

4. Pulse the sauce with the reserved tomatoes in a food processor (or insert an immersion blender) until slightly chunky, about eight 2-second pulses. Return the sauce to the dutch oven, add the remaining 1 tbsp oil, and season with salt and pepper, and sugar to taste.

5. TO STORE: Let the sauce cool uncovered at room temperature for 45 minutes. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate up to 2 days.

6. TO SERVE: Transfer the sauce to a medium saucepan, cover and warm over medium-low heat. Stir in the basil and season with salt, pepper and sugar to taste. Thin the sauce with pasta cooking water and extra virgin olive oil as needed when tossing it with the pasta.

Rating = So Damn Good

PS. This recipe can be stored in the freezer in an airtight container for 1 month.

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