There’s no need to open a jar of sauce when you can whisk this homemade creation together in the time it takes to cook a pot of pasta. This is a large batch, so use the extra as a base for stews, pizzas, and sautés. It will also keep in the freezer for at least three months.
Strain off and discard 1/2 cup of the tomatoes’ juices (this will give the sauce a thicker consistency).Heat the oil and garlic in a 4-quart saucepan over medium heat until the garlic sizzles steadily and turns golden brown in places, about 3 minutes. Add the rosemary and red pepper flakes; reduce the heat to medium low, and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and their remaining juices, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a gentle simmer, cover with the lid ajar, and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, so the flavors meld and the sauce reduces slightly. Using an immersion blender or working in batches in a regular blender, purée the sauce. Taste the sauce and season with more salt, pepper, or red pepper flakes if needed. If too acidic, add the sugar. Serve immediately or let cool to room temperature and refrigerate for up to one week, or freeze in zip-top bags or airtight containers.
For a spicy tomato-vodka sauce, add 3 Tbs. vodka with the tomatoes. After puréeing the sauce, stir in 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley instead of rosemary, and 3 Tbs. heavy cream. Let the sauce simmer for 5 minutes. Serve over rigatoni, topped with more Parmigiano.
Photo: Maren Caruso