30 minute spaghetti

When I only have 30 minutes to make dinner, this is a favorite to make. The secret to great sauce is to use 1 teaspoon of sugar in the sauce. The sugar softens out the bite of the tomatoes, and yields a rounder, less acidic, and more mellow tomato flavor. I also use Italian crushed tomatoes labeled “San Marzano” – the flesh is thicker and richer tasting than regular plum tomatoes. The tomatoes are grown in the volcano soil next to Mount Vesuvius in Italy. While that sounds so romantic, quaint and exotic, they are really only $2.29 for a 28oz can at your local market.

The Italian sausage that I use is freshly made at my local market – they usually come in a package of 5 sausages, its pre-seasoned and so convenient. I just squeeze the sausage out of the casing and use it like ground sausage or you could use scissors to snip them into smaller chunks.

This is such an easy recipe and leftover sauce is even better the next day. The ingredients just seem to settle and get cozy with each other overnight. As always, use good Parmesan cheese to finish.  The best compliment?  When my Italian friends come over and request my Spaghetti for supper.

My Favorite 30-Minute Spaghetti

yields a big ‘ol potful….enough for 6-8 people
for GF – use GF pasta

3/4 lb Fresh Italian sausage – remove sausage from casing
1 T minced garlic
1 small onion, minced
2- 28oz cans Italian crushed tomatoes
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
2 bay leaves
1 tsp sugar
2 tsp salt ground pepper

1. In a large pot over medium heat, add the sausage when the pot is hot. Fry the sausage until nicely browned, about 2-3 minutes. Add onions and garlic – fry 2 more minutes, stirring frequently so that nothing burns.

2. Add all remaining ingredients. Simmer for 25 minutes on low heat. Stir the pot every so often. Taste – adjust salt and pepper.  Is it still too acidic? Meaning, when you taste it, is there too sharp of a tomato flavor?  Add another teaspoon of sugar.

3. While sauce is simmering, boil a pot of water and cook spaghetti according to package directions. If you have fresh basil, mince and add to sauce before serving. Serve with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano.