I can't help but think my pasta cravings were a matter of genetics. Growing up with an Italian grandmother was heaven on Earth - in heels and pearls, always a marinara brewing on her stove, she would chop and stir with grace while we sat and salivated over what was soon to be our best meal yet....again.
Although she is no longer with us, whenever I make her marinara (or mine now adapted from hers) I can't help but feel connected to her, to my childhood, to my soul.
The trick to any good pasta dish, I believe, begins with the marinara - the pasta becomes merely a vehicle by which the marinara travels a lovely journey across your palate, down into your belly, warming you slowly from the inside out.
Finding the time to make a marinara from scratch is difficult with a little one in tow, however I have found if I make a big batch once a month I can freeze the left overs and very easily defrost and enjoy whenever Pasta Sunday comes around. Easier than you may think, the sauce below can simmer for a few hours while you get on with your day - the smell wafting through the house is reason enough to take the extra time to make it from scratch.
In addition to pasta cravings, I also found I had a carnivore of the highest demand growing in my belly. I searched high and low for just the right combination of meats to make the most delightful, decadent, delicious meatballs.......and good news, I think I have cracked the meatball code. Stay tuned for next weeks' recipe.....soon enough you will not only be able to master marinara but you will be able to enjoy it over a mountain of fabulous meatballs.
For now, enjoy the recipe below and maybe even start a pasta tradition of your own..........
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 1 -2 Hours
2 Cans (28 oz. each) Organic Crushed Tomatoes
2 Cups Organic Beef Broth
4 Roma Tomatoes (very ripe work best), washed and diced finely (do not discard innards)
3 Cloves Garlic, peeled and chopped finely
1 Organic Medium White Onion, peeled and chopped finely
1 Cup Organic Pureed Carrots (approximately 3 large carrots, peeled, boiled and pureed)
2 Cups Organic White Mushrooms, washed and sliced
3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon Ground Black Pepper
2 Tablespoons Dried Oregano
2 Teaspoons Sea Salt
2 Teaspoons Garlic Salt
1 Teaspoon Dried Parsley
3 Dried Bay Leaves
- Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat
- Add garlic and onions, sauteing until onions are just clear
- Add all remaining ingredients, stirring continuously over medium heat for five minutes
- Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 1 - 2 hours (it will be ready after an hour however the longer you can allow it to simmer, the more flavorful it will become)
- Remove bay leaves just prior to serving