This is a slight variation on my mom and grandmother’s pasta sauce! It takes a while to make so start it the night before, but you’ll have plenty of leftovers that you can freeze to make meatball sandwiches, pizza, eggplant parmesan, etc.
Start with a large onion cut into very tiny pieces. Add a few cloves of finely chopped garlic– I like things garlicy so I used about 12 cloves. Throw these in the bottom of a really large pan (like the one in the photo above) with some olive oil and sautee for a few minutes until your onions are translucent. Add salt, pepper, sugar, and dried italian spice (oregano, parsley, basil, etc.) in equal proportions.
Next add two large cans of diced or crushed tomatoes, a large can of tomato paste (should be about the size of your fist, not the teeny tiny one) and a cup of water. Also add a few leaves of basil and some parm cheese if you’re not trying to make a vegan version of this. Put it on low heat and cook for about four hours. Some weirdness will rise to the top– you can skim that off; it will give your sauce an acidic flavor.
I took a potato masher to mine to make it a little smoother; you could also use a food processor or blender depending on how chunky you like it. We served ours with angel hair, veggie meatballs and fontina cheese. To cook the veggie meatballs, we pan fried them first and then added them to the sauce. You could easily make a meat version with real meatballs or a vegan version with nutritional yeast instead of fontina!