Making your own red gravy (Italian for pasta sauce) with fresh vegetables is so simple and extremely satisfying. Trust me, it’s exponentially better tasting, and better for you, than whatever mass produced crap in a jar with a rustic “Italian” inspired label.
- Fresh produce (20 roma tomatoes, one large onion, and one large green bell pepper. I also added one large eggplant for some heft and because my NC garden had a bounty of delicious produce that needed to be consumed, this is optional)
- Red wine (2 cups, or the leftovers of the bottle you opened last week will work just fine)
- Vegetable stock (1.5 cups – add more for a runnier sauce, less for a thicker sauce)
- Tomato paste (1 6oz can, I prefer Cento)
- Olive oil
- Italian herb mix (fresh basil, dried Italian oregano, dried red pepper flakes, garlic powder, onion powder, cracked black pepper, fresh thyme, and fresh Italian flat leaf parsley)
Roughly chop all of the vegetables into the same size chunks. They don’t have to be pretty (they’re getting blended in the end) but they should be about the same size for even cooking.
In a large sauce pot over medium heat, add 3 table spoons of olive oil, let heat, then add your onion (and eggplant if you choose to use it). Cook until fork tender.
Next add the rest of your vegetables, the red wine, your Italian Herb Mix (season to taste, I add about 5-6 tablespoons), and your vegetable stock. Bring to a simmer.
Stir in the tomato paste until completely dissolved, allow mixture to return to a simmer for 5 minutes, then reduce to low heat. Cover and let it cook on low heat for 30 minutes, stirring frequently.
Remove from the heat and allow to come to room temperature.
Carefully spoon mixture into blender and puree until desired thickness.
Add to your favorite pasta, pizza, or fill a bath tub with it and jump in with a baguette paddle…it’s that good.