This is part of my ongoing documentation of spaghetti sauce variations. Like the sauce I made around this time last year, this one contains the seasonal vegetables we happened to have on hand, but they were a little different this time. This sauce has about the maximum basil flavor I can stand.
Here are the instructions/ingredients/method for approximately reproducing this batch of sauce:
- Upon receiving the week’s farm share, set aside the 3 tomatoes with over-ripe and/or moldy spots. Trim off the worst bits, dice the rest, and toss any yucky parts revealed in the dicing process into the compost. Store diced tomato in airtight container in refrigerator until you have time to make sauce–mine was good for 3 days.
- Peel and dice 1 medium-sized yellow onion.
- Place large pot over medium-high heat. Add 2 Tbsp. olive oil and use large spoon to spread it around to cover bottom of pot. Add onion. When it starts to sizzle, reduce heat to low.
- Meanwhile, core and dice 1 green pepper. Add it to the pot as soon as it’s ready. Stir. Hey, are you wearing an apron? If not, maybe you should put on one at this point, especially if you are wearing a treasured 1997 Jethro Tull concert T-shirt or any other garment that would not be improved by the random scattering of green and orange polka-dots likely to be produced by the upcoming steps of this recipe. Stir again.
- Take 5 leaves kale, tear out the main stems, and set them aside for your nibbling pets or compost. Pause to stir onion and pepper. Shred kale leaves into tiny bits. (Read about my kale-shredding techniques here.)
- Push onion and pepper to one side of pot. If bottom of pot no longer looks shiny, add another 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Spread it around. Place kale on oil. Add 5 cloves crushed garlic.
- Increase heat to medium. Cook about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until kale is looking a bit crisp. This gives it a nice texture in the finished sauce.
- Meanwhile, take leaves off 4 branches basil (about 1/2 cup) and shred them using a serrated knife (like a steak knife–a paring knife will only sort of dent them) or chopping tool.
- Mix in basil and the diced tomatoes. Add 106-oz. can of tomato puree. (You can get these large cans at GFS or Costco.) Add about 1 cup water to the can, swish to remove puree from the sides, and pour into the pot. Stir.
- Mix in 1 Tbsp. dried oregano, 1 tsp. ground black pepper, 1 tsp. sea salt, and 1/4 tsp. honey.
- Turn up heat until sauce starts bubbling, then turn it down just to the point where it is bubbling a little but not so much that it’s difficult to stir safely. Keep a lid on it when not stirring, to reduce splatters onto nearby surfaces.
- Simmer for 36 minutes–or even longer, if convenient.
- Serve as much as you like with your meal. Store the rest in glass jars. Lick the pot.
***Try my next batch of sauce!***
If you live in Pittsburgh or will be visiting on Thursday, September 15, you’re invited to Church of the Redeemer’s Spaghetti Dinner! 5:30-7:30pm at 5700 Forbes Avenue in Squirrel Hill. Only $1 for students and $5 for others. Get a delicious meal at a low price, make some new friends, and learn more about our progressive Episcopal congregation!