Up until a few years ago, I hated spending any length of time preparing food for myself. Even my vegetables were pre-chopped and packaged in little microwavable bags, for additional convenience. Such was my laziness in the kitchen, I even sometimes bought a prepared salad from Boots on the way home, as my “dinner”. Absolutely ridiculous.
These days, having picked up some great habits from my boyfriend, I make the effort to prepare as many meals from scratch as possible. To reflect the healthy mood so prevalent at this time of year (we all try, don’t we? Even though I’m eating chocolate as I type!), I’ll be sharing some themed posts with you. The first is my go-to pasta sauce; unprocessed and delicious.
Tomato Pasta Sauce
I was accustomed to buying ready-made pasta sauce and never imagined how easy it is to make your own. This is a fantastic base for you to start with and makes enough sauce for about 4 people; if you’re cooking for 2 or just yourself, freeze the remainder in a clean jar (leave in the fridge overnight to defrost and reheat in a saucepan when required).
Method: In a saucepan, gently fry a couple of chopped garlic cloves in a pool of olive oil, before adding a whole carton of passata and two tins of chopped Italian plum tomatoes (rinse these under the tap beforehand in a sieve).
Season generously with oregano (about a teaspoon), salt and fresh black pepper. Left to cook slowly for 90 minutes, this sauce is full of nourishment and acts as a perfect base for you to experiment with. I like to fry courgettes with some paprika and olive oil, before adding to the sauce. You can also substitute the oregano for basil (fresh or dried is fine) or add a finely chopped onion for some texture.