Best ever?

The best tomato and basil pasta sauce is simple but fresh sauce made with tinned chopped tomatoes, garlic and fresh basil. Full of flavour but low in calories. It's a real family favourite and suitable for a vegetarian, vegan or dairy free diet. tinnedtomatoes.com
Yep! I would say so. I started making fresh tomato and basil sauce for pasta when I was a student. It was an easy sauce I could make to feed myself and my friends, even when my boyfriend (husband now) would invite bands to stay in our student flat and I would end up feeding a dozen hungry lads.

Over the years the sauce has been tweaked to what I like to think is the best version of it. Back in my student days I would never have added red wine to a sauce as it was too much of an extravagance and I had to watch my pennies, but it does make a big difference to the favour. Originally I would have used dried basil, but of course adding fresh basil gives such of pop of flavour to the sauce and I seem to remember adding tomato ketchup to the sauce if I didn’t have any tomato puree but I’d never do that now.

Best Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce. A simple but fresh sauce. Full of flavour but low in calories. It's a real family favourite and suitable for a vegetarian, vegan or dairy free diet.

I have to tell you a funny story about this sauce. Well Graham may not find it so funny.

It’s fair to say Graham isn’t confident in the kitchen and to get down to the core of the matter, he really has no interest in learning. Maybe if he hadn’t moved straight from his parent’s house to sharing a house with me, he would have had to fend for himself and eventually found a joy in cooking, but that didn’t happen.

I was determined he should at least have one recipe he could make unsupervised (yes unsupervised, you will understand why I say that when you hear the rest of my story), so I taught him to make the original version of this tomato sauce. 

From time to time over the years he’s felt inspired enough to make this for me on days where he was off and I was working. Not often but now and again and it was always a treat to be unexpectedly cooked for, even if the onion was often quite crunchy or he may have had the notion to add chilli, a lot of chilli.
Best Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce. A simple but fresh sauce. Full of flavour but low in calories. It's a real family favourite and suitable for a vegetarian, vegan or dairy free diet.

Cooper and I have now banned him from making us pasta.

The last time Graham made this sauce for us I came from work to the delicious smell wafting around the house. My mouth was watering and Cooper was hungry and couldn’t wait to eat.

I had a little taste of the sauce and it was delicious.  Graham told Cooper and I to have a seat while he served up the pasta. It looked and smelled great but my first forkful, then my second confirmed something was wrong. It tasted soapy, really soapy. 

We’ve come to the conclusion he must have drained the pasta too quickly into a soapy sink after doing some dishes and the soapy water filled up through the pasta before it drained away.

To say we are too nervous to let him make us pasta again is an understatement. When he offers Cooper says poison pasta, no thanks Daddy. Poor Graham, he will never hear the end of it. Bless him.

Best Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce. A simple but fresh sauce. Full of flavour but low in calories. It's a real family favourite and suitable for a vegetarian, vegan or dairy free diet.
This sauce is delicious. It’s rich with the flavour of tomato, but has a subtle flavour of basil too.
As you can see I can be very generous with the sauce to pasta ratio. What can I say, it tastes so good and it’s a healthy sauce too.

Health Benefits of Cooked Tomatoes

Did you know tomatoes are even healthier when they are cooked? 

It’s true. Tomatoes are low in calories and high in antioxidants, dietary fibre, minerals and vitamins. 

Once they are cooked the lycopene (which gives tomatoes  their red colour) is increased as are the vitamins  and minerals. Usually when you cook fruit or vegetables some vitamins and minerals are lost, but tomatoes are an exception to this rule, the lycopene. vitamins and minerals are increased and more easily absorbed by the body. The lycopene is linked with lower risk of heart disease and cancer.
This sauce is also low calorie and great for the 5:2 diet,  (if you haven’t heard the 5:2 diet or fast diet as it is also known, has been updated this year) but remember to weigh out your pasta and go easy on that sprinkle of veggie or vegan parmesan.

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Best Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce. A simple but fresh sauce. Full of flavour but low in calories. It's a real family favourite and suitable for a vegetarian, vegan or dairy free diet.

Best Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce


A really tasty fresh tomato sauce with the aromatic flavour of fresh basil. Fabulous on pasta or served with a nut loaf.

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
  • 4-5 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vingear
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • a generous glug of red wine
  • a generous handful of fresh basil, finely chopped or torn
  • a good grinding of salt & black pepper

Instructions

1. Heat the olive oil in a pan and saute the onion and garlic until it is soft and translucent. Take your time with this, you don’t want crunchy onion in the sauce.2. Once the onions are soft add the tomatoes, tomato puree, wine, balsamic vinegar and sugar and simmer gently for 20-25 minutes until the sauce has thickened.3. Add the fresh basil and season with salt and pepper.4. Serve over freshly cooked pasta.5. Enjoy!Notes: This sauce freezes well.

Details

Total time:
Yield: Serves 4-6

Nutrition facts per 4 servings:
152 calories
4.4 grams fat

Veggie bolognese sauce is a simple but super tasty sauce that is great on spaghetti or tagliatelle. It's a real family favourite and suitable for vegetarians, vegans and those on a dairy-free diet.

If you love this sauce why not try another of our family favourites Veggie Bolognese Serve it on UK style on spaghetti or Italian style on tagliatelle.


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Best Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce

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