Crockpot Pasta Sauce
A couple of weeks ago I made a huge mess of pasta sauce.
A lot of my green efforts come from an increasing p.o.’d-ness at how many pasta sauce jars and yogurt containers and applesauce jars I find myself throwing into the recycling bin. It’s a a lot of refuse. Makes me mad.
So I saved a few jars from purchased pasta sauce, and I made sauce in the crockpot. A whole lot. Again, the basic easy ridiculous recipe involves a lot of non-measuring and throwing of handfuls of stuff into the pot. Something like this:
Vegetarian Crockpot Pasta Sauce:
- Fill the crock about 2/3 full of various raw veggies: mushrooms (not more than half a pound unless you brown them first), cut up bell peppers, chopped onion, zucchini, whatever else you can think of.
- Add maybe 3-4 (or more, if you’re me) spoonfuls of crushed garlic from a jar, or the real stuff if you’re up for it, in with the veggies.
- Ditto a few teaspoonsful of Italian dried (or 3 times as much of fresh) herbs and spices.
- Pour 4 big cans of diced tomatoes with juice into the pot. Add 1 can of tomato paste. Stir if you want to, or don’t bother.
- Cook on low all day. Give it a good stir when you get home from work.
- About half an hour before serving, start some pasta to go under it, toss in a couple of glubs of cheap red wine, 1-2 tsp. salt, and more Italian herbs.
- If you live with kids who won’t eat recognizable veggies, attack it (gently!) with an immersion blender to obliterate/disguise the veggie pieces. (And as careful as you’re being, don’t wear your white tank top while you do it, because if you’re wearing a white tank top you’re guaranteed to splatter. Murphy’s law.)
Got a total of 4-5 jars of pasta sauce this way, with very little work and not much cost either. And it’s pretty darn healthy.
Think that’s what we’re having for dinner tonight…