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BCRPA Weight Trainer * BCRPA Group Fitness Leader * BCRPA Personal Trainer * Cory Holly Institute Principles of Sports Nutrition Education Program * Body Training System Group Power Instructor *Body Training System Group Centergy Instructor * CORE Conditioning Instructor * TKO Fitness Instructor * Boot Camp Leader

Friday, January 4, 2013

Foody Friday | My 1st Homemade Tomato Sauce From Scratch

It should be everyone’s goal to choose the best options for dining but it can be hard when there are so many delicious and naughty easy pre-packaged to-go meals or frozen dinners that can be so easily heated up. Plus, who has the time to spend an hour to prep and cook a nutritious meal these days?

I have a somewhat hectic and sporadic schedule due to the nature of my profession, so I tend to rely on super quick meals or snacks that don’t need a lot of time to prepare. You may think that you need to slay away in the kitchen for hours to have a well-cooked healthy meal but it’s not always the case. With a little imagination and some fresh, healthy ingredients, you may surprise yourself with what you can create!

And that is exactly what happened to me. I love pasta. Yes, I said it. I don’t care if it is a bowl of carby-starchy-sugary-fats…pasta is delicious! The saucier with more cheese, the better! Now, that being said, it doesn’t mean that I eat it everyday nor am I saying that you should be eating it everyday or that it is the best option. However, if you can produce a pasta dish that is somewhat healthier, why wouldn’t you? So my inspiration for today’s Foody Friday is my first attempt at making a healthy-ER pasta sauce from scratch.

I am no chef, nor do I claim to be, but I am confident enough to throw a few things together to make a yummy dish at the end of the day. So here I am, at the grocery store, picking up random things to make my very first tomato sauce from scratch! Mind you, I have no idea what goes in it or how to prepare it in the first place.
I picked up a few red tomatoes, garlic, mushrooms, an onion, and a medium size can of crushed tomatoes. Seriously, how hard could it be right?

Beki’s “attempt at” homemade tomato pasta sauce

2-3 tomatoes, diced
2 handfuls of mushrooms, sliced
3-4 garlic cloves, minced (more or less depending how garlic-y you like it)
1 medium sized onion, diced
1 can of fresh tomato sauce (I chose a medium sized can because I wanted to make sauce that would last a few days, but you can always use less)
Extra virgin olive oil for cooking
Salt, pepper for taste
*optional 2-4 tsp of chipotle chilli powder
*optional other herbs you like in your sauce, example: basil…etc
1) Heat a big pot over med-high heat, add about a tablespoon or so of oil, then begin to sweat out the onions. (I made the horrible mistake of not letting the onions sweat out enough…it should be translucent when you are done..keep an eye on it)
2) Now add all the mushrooms and continue to cook until they have decreased in size considerably. (It should be smelling real good right about now)
3) Add garlic and continue to cook for another minute or so, then add the fresh tomatoes. Keep stirring for a few more minutes. (I always salt a little bit after each time I add a new ingredient, I’d suggest you do the same)
4) Pour in your desired amount of the can tomato sauce and STIR like crazy! (The pot will be a bit bubbly from the sauce boiling) Decrease the heat to med-low and continue to stir. You cannot leave the sauce alone because it can easily burn! This is when you can add more salt & pepper to taste and add your desired herbs. Always taste after you add anything to make sure you like it.
5) I let the sauce simmer for about 10-15 minutes (I’m horrible with checking the time…or measuring anything…) and it was done!
6) You can enjoy the sauce with any type of pasta you like, this night, I chose my BF’s favorite, bow-tie pasta!

The sauce was lacking a little bit of taste due to my impatience to let the onions sweat all the way through and the fact that we had also ran out of basil!!! But all in all—it was rich in tomato taste, a little bit sweet, a little bit tart, and very fresh! I’m not about to win any Top Chef titles with this one..but I think I’m on my way to cooking fresh pasta sauces from now on, no more store bought sauces, yay!

Until next time Team, why not try making something from scratch that you normally ALWAYS buy at the supermarket?
Health respect & happiness

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