basic tomato sauce copy

To make a great tomato sauce you need really good tomatoes. Making fresh tomato sauce can be amazing, but it can also be bland if the tomatoes are out of season. Mario Batali has a wonderful tomato sauce recipe. I had it for the first time at my friend Kathryn’s place, and I still remember how great it was. She told me that Batali specifically uses canned San Marzano tomatoes grown in the Valle del Sarno in Italy. I haven’t used any other kind of canned tomatoes since then.

I slightly tweaked the recipe to make a good overall basic tomato sauce that I can use for both pasta and pizza.

INGREDIENTS (makes about 3 cups of sauce):


  1. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion and garlic, stirring, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Be careful to not burn the garlic.
  2. Add the thyme sprigs, basil leaves and tomatoes. With your hands, take the tomatoes from the can, crush and break them apart into small pieces. Add about half the liquid from the can and discard the rest. Let it simmer uncovered for 15-20 min to thicken the sauce.
  3. Remove and discard the herb sprigs.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Use now, store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.

Picture below
Serve the tomato sauce with bucatini, cooked al dente, with shredded pecorino.  You will be surprised by how much flavor this tomato sauce has.

bucatini in tomato sauce

Tina Diep

I LOVE FOOD and better yet I LOVE TO COOK.

I can thank my Vietnamese roots. Vietnamese people use a great amount of time cooking and eating, traits which they have learned from their families. Everyone seems to know how to cook, and they are adept at picking fresh and quality foods from the market. Food is a priority in Vietnam – if you eat well, you live well.

I was born in Denmark, and in my mind I am a true Dane. Danish people cook a lot as well, but they prefer to spend less time in the kitchen and more time at the table. I consider myself Vietnamese from a culinary standpoint and Danish from a cultural standpoint (and I live in New York, which is a Mecca for foodies).

My mum is a great cook, she taught me how to chop vegetables and how to just randomly throw things together and somehow get an awesome meal. She makes cooking seem like art, and she is my inspiration for DiepLicious cooking.

My husband loves food as well and he has a great appetite. Cooking for him is a real joy. He has a great interest in everything that concerns health, and loves to point out specific foods and why they are good for you to eat. I will share his knowledge with you. He makes my cooking more challenging, but also a lot healthier.

I offer you one Golden Rule: to enjoy food fully, always taste the food even if you don’t like it. For me it takes a couple of tries to get to know the real flavor.


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