My mom's friend Laura is a legit Italian. I used to babysit for her chillins when I was younger, and I remember the homemade pizza like it was yesterday...I'm talking from scratch, no refridgerated crusts here, people. She always made her own bread too, the smells in this house were amazing!
Well, I happened to get to go out to lunch with Mama K and Laura a while back and somehow touched on the subject that I was looking for a good pasta sauce recipe for the gazillion tomatoes that would be coming up soon. Could I have mentioned this around a better lunch partner?? Not in a million...
So she scribbled down her ingredient list, gave me some instructions, and I couldn't wait to get enough tomatoes to give it a shot. Well, my tomatoes first started coming in smaller batches...and I had some Mrs. Wages packets so I cheated and used those for my first two smaller attempts at pasta sauce. A couple weeks ago, my luck changed and my bounty was ready to be harvested!! I had more tomatoes that I knew what to do with...so I knew it was time!
4 pork chops
ground italian sausage
diced tomatoes, drained
4 jalopenos, whole
Sear the pork chops (bone in) in your stock pot with olive oil.
Add all other ingredients....I went by instinct/taste for amounts since I was making such a large batch. I also used my own tomatoes that I blanched to remove the skin and blended up to make juice. The spagetti sauce link above will show you this method if you have whole tomatoes to use....I added the jalopenos to the blending so there are no chunks, it's liquified heat added to the sauce. My little helper is adding ingredients to the pot as I prepare them....
We took the bones off the pork chops at this point and let the sauce simmer overnight (setting the alarm to stir every so often of course). Simmering for 5-6 hours is the key to great pasta sauce in my opinion...it melds all the flavors together so perfectly, and basically melts/disintegrates the pork chops to add taste without huge chunks of pork....believe me, this takes a while but it is totally worth it!
You will never catch me buying pasta sauce at the store again....
And in true food hoarder fashion, I canned the whole stockpot full (although I did freeze 4 pints). Some people, Laura included, are not fans of canning the sauce since freezing takes less time and keeps it for the same length of time. With a cow, a pig, my Sam's Club seafood hoard, the frozen green beans from the garden, and frozen sweet corn I do each year taking up my freezer space, I like to have the canning option available to me and just store my hoard of sauce, salsa, and pickles downstairs and out of the way.
Freezin is the easier option, but if you would like to can your sauce, directions for canning are here and are pretty simple if you have the time. Either way, if you have a free afternoon, do yourself a favor and enter the world of homemade pasta sauce....I would bet the farm that you won't be returning to the other side! Thanks for the authentic recipe, Laura!!