I'm going to tell you how to make the best tomato sauce you have ever tasted in your life.
This sauce has revived my body and spirit tonight... I even sang a little after dinner.
Get a bag of fresh organic tomatoes, say ten to a dozen, a couple pounds. It's the season for it, so you won't have any problems buying as many sacks as you like. Or come down to Mariquita Farms, in my neighborhood, and pick them yourself.
Cut them in half and drop them in a plastic zip lock bag.
Take two to four sweet peppers, any color, and cut those in half too. Pull and rinse out the seeds. Add them to the same zip lock bag. Cut up some garlic, and throw it in there too.
Pour a few tablespoons of olive oil into the bag of tomato-peppers, as if you were dressing a salad.
Next, you want to add a few dollops of "balsamic glaze." This is a thick balsamic "grape must," which I discovered at Trader Joe's. It's a syrup. I use it on nearly everything, from meat to greens to strawberries. If you don't have the glaze, splash in some regular Modena balsamic vinegar. Don't worry about getting the measurements precise. It's as if you were coating a salad.
Salt the mixture, seal up the bag, and smoosh it all around, so the tomatoes and peppers get covered with the oil, balsamic, garlic, and salt.
Now, pour the tomato mixture into a casserole pan, or a cake pan, or a Dutch oven... anything big enough to fit all the "salad" with at least 3" depth.
Place in a oven, uncovered, heated to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Yes, you read that right. You don't need to preheat, because the whole point is that it's the slowest cook ever.
Just stick the tomatoes in there, and LEAVE. Go away for hours. Who cares. Don't even bother looking at it for at least three hours. But six would be okay too. If you turn down the heat even lower, you could be gone all day. I've set the oven for as low as 180 degrees when I wasn't sure how long I might be away.
While you're out smashing the state or fornicating, the tomatoes and peppers will be roasting like fallen angels. The tomatoes will release a great deal of their juice, making "tomato liquor."
If you want to, you can drain off this liquor and use it for all kinds of incredible sauces and soups...it's the most profound tomato moonshine you'll ever toss back. If that is the case, you would then save the tomatoes separate from the liquor and use them as you please: from the spoon to your mouth, or any other dish that cries for red fruit.
But let's say spaghetti is your mantra. In that case, you don't separate anything. Pour the whole roasted pan of melted peppers and tomatoes into a saucepan— or if you used the Dutch oven, place it on the stove.
Throw in a handful of fresh basil leaves, or some fresh oregano if you want. Some sauteed onions would be good. Or you could have roasted the onions too, in the same fashion, if you wanted.
Now you need to plug in the world's greatest appliance since the Cuisinart: The Immersion Blender. It's the Magic Wand of cooking. You plunge it into any melange and it blends the ingredients into perfect sauce.
(You can also use a food processor too, especially one with a spout. I just like the immersion one better for this.)
Note that I did not skin or blanch the tomatoes or peppers! That is the labor that usually takes hours and drives everyone insane. But by slow roasting, the skin becomes so tender and delicious, all bitterness disappears. The blender then purees the crepe of the skin into oblivion.
Now dip into the pan with your spoon and taste the results. You are going to not believe that you could have made something so divine, so deep, like a Sicilian oracle. This is the miracle of slow roasting.
Make your pasta, dunk your bread, pour it over your head. Whatever seems right.