Today's Tasty Tuesday is all about comfort food. I think I'm in the mood for that after cuddling our 3-month old baby to sleep this evening. The recipe for this tomato sauce is for me the epitome of comfort food: it's easy to make, I usually have all the ingredients at home, and it has lots of room for creativity; the only caveat: it takes about 6-8 hours of cooking time. Yes, my dear readers, it's crock pot time!
The story of this recipe begins long before my time sometime in Richard's childhood. When he was little, his mom sometimes cooked a jar of tomato sauce all day to improve the taste. After Richard left home and joined the Army, he decided at some point to take it a step further and make the sauce from scrap, using mostly canned items from his bachelor pantry. A couple of year later, I come in the picture and fall in love not only with the man, but also with this recipe. During the last 4 years we have been experimenting with this recipe and shared it many a time with friends and family. There are too many good times and stories connected with this tomato sauce; it is the perfect food for a larger round and entertaining, therefore we served it a lot on Fridays for our D&D group, and as some of you may know, those days were always fun and I still miss it. Here's the recipe, with fond memories and a sad heart:
Own a crock pot!!
Fill the crock pot with:
4 cartons of tomato puree (you can also use 2 cans each of whole tomatoes and tomato paste)
and whatever else you like! We usually use:
1 jar of artichoke hearts
1-2 cans of small black olives
1 pack of Italian sausage, cooked and crumbled
1 jar of sun-dried tomatoes
1-2 cans of mushrooms
Cook everything on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-6 hours (I strongly recommend the longer cooking time). Enjoy with a lot of friends on pasta with cheese and crusty bread; a glass or two of a good red wine also work well with it.