Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Yummy Mummy's "Never Buy A Jar Again" Marinara

I fantasize that all my readers look like this. Only without the hair rolls.
And only if they're chicks.

Here is the conversation we are having right now:

The Yummy Mummy: I have something for you to try. Marinara. Homemade.

Skeptical Blog Reader: Not out of a jar?

The Yummy Mummy: No, this is something you make from scratch and it tastes soooo much better than...

Skeptical Blog Reader: Yeah, this is nice, Yummy-Mummy-Wack-Job. But here's my deal - while you are sunning your size 2 hot model body around the pool and your children are being raised by Guadalupe, Jean Marie and Sven, the international clan of nannies, I have real problems....a mortgage, twins with chicken pox, a husband who lays on the couch and plays with his penis way too often and a dog that pees on my carpet. So I'll be opening my jar of Ragu. Thank you very much.

The Yummy Mummy: Did you just call me "Yummy-Mummy-Wack-Job"?

Skeptical Blog Reader: Focus, Wack Job. I can't make your homemade sauce.

The Yummy Mummy: Look, I know you've got stuff going on. Me too. Although at least my husband can keep his hands out of his pants for hours at a stretch. That's something. C'mon, won't you give it a try?

Skeptical Blog Reader: I know you're not really a size two, you know. I just said that.

The Yummy Mummy: Just make the sauce.

Skeptical Blog Reader: Bitch.

xxoo YM

The Yummy Mummy's "Never Buy A Jar Again" Marinara
(adapted from Rocco Dispirito's Mother's recipe)

Serves 4

3 cloves garlic, crushed (you can use the pre-chopped kind to save time)
1/2 yellow onion, peeled and chopped fine
3 tbsp olive oil
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes (San Marzano brand, if possible)
1 tsp sugar
1 cup chicken or beef stock (home-made is better, if you have it)
red pepper flakes to taste (optional)
salt to taste

Also optional: Basil, Parsley

1. Cook the garlic and onion in the olive oil in a skillet or cast iron fry pan over a medium-low flame, about 10 minutes or until garlic is tender and onions translucent, not brown (this is called “sweating” because it will draw out a lot of moisture and flavor). Add the chili flakes to taste, if you want them in.

Kitchen Note: If you are doubling this recipe, use a stock pot instead of a skillet. Doubling is a good idea because you can make sauce ahead and freeze it or plan a leftover meal (see these yummy meatball sliders) the next day with the sauce, which always tastes better on day two.

2. Add the crushed tomato to the onion and garlic. Pour the stock into the pan and add the sugar. Stir and bring to a simmer. Taste and season with salt and cover. Go play with the kids and let the sauce simmer on low heat for about one hour, if you can, although it will taste nearly as good if you make it on the fly and have to take it off the stove sooner. The sauce should be fairly thin, but not watery and very smooth. If it is too thick, add some more stock. If it is too thin, uncover and simmer for 3 minutes. You can finish this with sprinkles of finely chopped basil or parsley, if you wish.

Goodbye Ragu!



Shannon said...

I make big batches of the stuff and freeze it in quart sized containers or even freezer bags. It tastes so good and fresh. I love homemade sauce. I could never bring myself to call it gravy as my Italian-American friend calls it.

SaintTigerlily said...

My Italian fiance despises the use of the word gravy. Seriously. If he wore panties, they would be bunched.

Other pet peeves of his; when people leave the vowel off the end of Italian words.

Examples include:


Drives. Him. Wild.

Annie K. Nodes said...

Skeptical blog reader is such a twat. Anyone who's met you knows you're a size 0.

Love making homemade sauce. Homemade stock, not so much.

The Yummy Mummy said...

Shannon - What is this calling the sauce "gravy"? Are the Italians smoking zee crack? I had to change this post because originally I wrote "tomato sauce" which is "ketchup" to people in Australia. It's all so confusing, this communication thing. No wonder there are wars.

Saint Tiger Lily - Can I come to dinner at your house and say this sentence over and over, "I'd like to have some more "pro-jut" with my "muzz-a-rell" before I eat my "anti-past". And I'll just keeping saying stuff like that and butchering the language and we'll see how long it takes for his head to spin off? oh! oh! Can we do that?

Annie - You're so much better than Sceptical Blog Reader. And I am a size that fun house mirror at Coney Island. That counts, right?


SaintTigerlily said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SaintTigerlily said...

Any time!

The Yummy Mummy said...

Wait! Wait! Saint Tigerlily thinks I'm gonna "fit right in", all that tormenting her husband for fun and sport - and the comment was deleted. What?

Shit. I want that in writing.


The Yummy Mummy said...

You're on Tigerlily...

Just send us an invite!

Shannon said...

Yeah. A lot of people with Italian backgrounds say gravy. I used to argue with my friend that gravy is brown and you put it on meat.

There's another food blogger from R.I. who is Italian-American and calls it gravy. I thought maybe it was a NJ thing, but it isn't.

I hear you on the pet peeves. Those are mine too and I'm not even Italian, LOL.

ntsc The Art of The Pig said...

I would point out that this cans very well and then you can pretend to be a real American cook, just open a can and heat.

It also works real well with home made Italian sausage, which is ground pork and spices.

I really disliked any kind of tomato sauce (and that includes catsup) until I found out it was manufactured tomato sauce (including catsup) that I don't like.

The Yummy Mummy said...

NTSC - I am not surprised that you make your own, darling! A guy who makes his own salami is definately going to make his own sauce.

That said, the reason I don't can is because I'm afraid to infect people with botulism or salmonella or the red death or whatever happens when you improperly can.

I'm too flaky to can.


Krysta said...

Kim, why did you have to have to put our conversation on this post? I swear I thought I told you this was private. I mean I know my husband has issues but jeez, I didn't think you were going to make it public. Go read my blog...I have an explanation of why your hubby is on his crazy diet.

ntsc the art of the pig said...

Krysta - I didn't know it was private either.

Yummy - My wife makes the tomato sauces, more than one, I only can them. However I can bring you in a piece of salami, if you have a day you can bring the tribe down to Lincoln Center.
Monday or Thursday AM would be best.

In Cleveland I managed to unload a dozen pints of marmalade, I think I have orange left, you want one of those? Fruit, sugar and water.

Rebecca (Foodie With Family) said...

Yummy Mummy- Don't fear the can! It's all about the science. If you're really freaked out about it get some ph paper from your local pharmacy. All you have to do is assure yourself of the proper acid to base ratio, use the proper processing method based on the ingredients and you'll never mess up canning anything.

Plus, if you open a jar of something you've put up you'll know if there's a problem. There are obvious signs. If it's furry, smells bad, has weird colors in/on it or the lid doesn't make a popping sound when you break the seal you just don't chance it.

I've been canning for yeeeeeeears and I'm not dead yet. Yet! Once you've had homemade pickles and preserves there's no going back.

Jennifer said...

This sounds so similar to my recipe for marinara! We usually throw in some sort of meat, and a few veggies. Whatever is available here...always changes. Thanks for encouraging people who have access to the jarred marinara to make their own! Once you start, you won't go back to the jarred stuff!

The Yummy Mummy said...

NTSC - I'm coming. But do you really know what you've gotten yourself into? Seriously, you still have time to pull out.

Rebecca - I so fear the can! But thanks for the encouragement. You make it sound so easy. You know there's going to be green fuzz growing in my jam, right?

Jennifer - I do a lot of variations too. And that's the great thing about mastering a basic marinara. Once you learn the technique, improvisation with whatever is hanging round the back of the fridge is easy. Hopefully, we can make some converts!

Evil Chef Mom - My blog is pretty much just a way for me to expose your outrageous habits and confidences. It is just a stroke of luck for me that EVERYTHING you do and say is incredibly bloggable. And please tell your husband to wash his hands.


ntsc the art of the pig said...

I checked, I have orange, four fruit and lime marmalade left. Oh yes and blood orange, but it didn't quite jell, but should be good cold.

Richard Tucker Square, just across 66th St. from a Barnes and Noble and which has a farmers market on Thursdays and is across the street from the downtown IRT exit in the middle of the 66th station.

Canning is easy, I haven't killed myself yet.

avra said...

Not much I can add to this conversation! Except that we are more of a homemade pesto family. (Maybe because I hate Ragu). I'm just so glad the recipes are back. I love your non-food insights Kim but I was starting to become desperate for your gourmet recipes simplified for those of us cooking with two kids under the age of 4.

Joanne Rasmussen said...

I am going to make this, this weekend. I am trying to think what I did for entertainment before I found your blog which was about 2 weeks ago. x

Lucy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lucy said...

Kim, I needed a larf this mornin'.

As usual, where do you think I head first??? Here, of course.

You're tops, as my best mate Jo would say.

I deleted my earlier comment because it made NO sense, at all...