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Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce

This sauce is so flavorful that you don’t need to add any cheese! This recipe yields about 2 quarts. My apologies for the huge time range when simmering the sauce down: it depends on how watery (or pasty) the tomatoes are, and your desired thickness.

Don’t be deterred by the large amount of garlic. As long as it hasn’t been whizzed into a pulp, the slow cooking will give the garlic a mellow, if not somewhat creamy flavor —yes, sounds odd, but good!


  • 1 large bunch of basil
  • 6 cups fresh (preferably naturally sweet) tomatoes; if you don’t have fresh tomatoes, Muir Glen provides very good canned ones
  • cloves from 1 large head of garlic
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Remove the stems from the basil and roughly chop the leaves.
  2. Briefly blanch (about 30 seconds) the tomatoes in boiling water. Peel then chop.
  3. Peel and mince the garlic, but not so fine that it becomes a liquid or paste.
  4. Combine the basil, tomato, garlic and olive oil in a sauce pot. Bring to a simmer over medium high heat. Stir occaisionally to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the pot.
  5. Lower the heat and continue at a gentle simmer, uncovered.
  6. Cook until thickened to desired consistency. This could take anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes.
  7. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot over freshly made pasta.

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