28 July 2011

Tomato Pasta Sauce with Lotsa Secret Veggies (aka Cheeky Sneaky Sauce)

I'm not a snob. Right? But sometimes I am.

I'm a food snob. I definitely turn my nose up at pre-packaged food. Especially pasta sauce, because (come to find out), it's not hard or expensive to make your own. And, bonus, it's delicious and so much healthier. Come on! Saving money is a no-brainer, here. So being snobbish about pasta sauce is actually saving me money and making me healthier. That's like closed-loop, circular, inverted snobbishness. Snobbishness with its own life force? Um, maybe?

Then there's that other kind of food snob. The one who won't eat vegetables. What's that about? Either you're a 3-year-old or you're, y'know, acting like one. I'm not gonna lie. You're dumb. I think I can get away with saying that since anyone who disagrees with me is probably not reading a vegetarian food blog. But if you have these people in your life - children, 30-year-old children (men) - then this sauce is totally for you. The veg is all there, but no one would ever know -- you can't see them, and it just tastes like a basic pasta sauce. Serve it up and watch in glee as those suckers eat more veg in one sitting than they've had in a week.

This is actually really easy. Probably the most time-consuming part is the chopping, but that's really no biggie. I always thought making a super-good, versatile, perfect sauce would be much more difficult than this, but it's basically down to four easy steps:

That's it. You should make a double or triple batch and jar it up to save for a rainy day. I gave some away, too, as part of a nice little homemade housewarming gift. Or, you could just eat it all yourself. No one will ever know.

Tomato Pasta Sauce with Lotsa Secret Veggies
original recipe by me!

1 red pepper (diced)
1 red onion (diced)
1 carrot (grated)
abt 1/3 aubergine (diced)
1 clove garlic
1 knob butter
glug red wine
500g tomato passata
splash balsamic vinegar
sea salt to taste

Sauté veg in butter until soft and browned.
Remove from heat.
Deglaze with a glug of red wine.
Transfer to saucepan.
Add tomato passata, puree with hand blender.
Stir in a splash of balsamic vinegar.
Salt to taste.

Heat through and use for whatever purpose you wish. Bring to simmer for at least 5 minutes if canning.

Makes about 3 cups sauce.


  1. Tried this, didn't have any wine. I think it needed it. Added some ingredients from the 'ultimate pizza sauce' recipe I found (Google it),including fennel seeds and parmesan cheese and turned it around.

    Love hiding vegetables in sauce.

    My favourite recipe is still your broccoli, peanut, noodle thing. Lush everytime!

  2. Yeah I think the wine adds some complexity to the sauce that it'd be lost without... I can see a similar flavour coming from the parm, so good call!

    Thanks for commenting!! :)