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Five minute sauce

This is a go-to answer for dinner chez moi. I am frequently not home until after 7pm and by then, I am usually so hungry that any bag of chips in my apartment is not safe. And there are nights I want a real meal and I just have to rush out the door. Since I eschew (mom, be proud that the education you paid for causes me to use pretentious vocabulary) food that comes already prepared this sauce is key. I tried buying some jars of sauce this winter because I was so busy and I was so disappointed. All of them were missing something. And I will be frank, spending $8-$12 to get my hands on a decent jar of sauce just doesn’t make my budget happy.

It can be adapted to what you have on hand and it cooks while your pasta is boiling. This sauce makes it so that I do not ever have to buy sauce in a jar ever again. Even when all I have time for is boiling noodles.


Five minute sauce
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Recipe Type: Sauce
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Prep time: 2 mins
Cook time: 5 mins
Total time: 7 mins
Serves: 4
A sauce that cooks while your pasta boils.
  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 red chili
  • 1/4 cup dried basil*
  • 1 large sweet pepper
  • 1 can diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  1. Boil water.
  2. Peel & chop your clove of garlic. Chop your chili & remove the seeds. Dice your pepper.
  3. In a second pot, over medium heat, pour in the olive oil.
  4. Add the garlic and let it cook until it is aromatic (about one minute).
  5. Add the chili and the basil*. Cook for 30 seconds.
  6. Add the can of tomatoes (using all the liquid) and the pepper.
  7. Add salt & pepper to taste.
  8. Cook over medium-low heat until pasta is ready.
  9. Drain pasta and toss with sauce.

If you have fresh basil, use about 1 cup chopped. Chop the stems too, but keep them separate. Toss the stems and about 1/4 of the leaves in where I indicated adding the basil and stir the rest in about 30 seconds before the sauce is finished.

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