I usually triple this classic recipe as this gravy lasts 1 week in your refrigerator or months in your freezer.  Remember friends and neighbors love this stuff - bring a quart over and they’ll always be there for you if you need them!



 Serves 6-8

 1/2 cup olive oil

6 cloves garlic crushed*

1 can plum peeled Italian tomatoes - 28 oz. (put in blender)**

1 can tomato paste - 6 oz. (start with 1/2 or 3 oz. - add more if you like it thick)

Dried herbs - herbs are according to taste - some like basil, parsley, and sugar combination while others like oregano and crushed red pepper for a spicy sauce.

If using fresh herbs you need more.

My family likes:  1/2 tsp. dried parsley, 1 tsp. dried basil.

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper


*I like the garlic to be really small so I use a device that crushes it however you can chop finely with a knife.

**I like my tomatoes to be smooth so I put in a blender however you can just crush them in your pot while cooking.


 Gently heat olive oil - do not burn - approximately 1 minute.

Add crushed garlic - sauté approximately 1-2 minutes- again do not burn.

After putting cans of tomatoes in blender - add to pot with olive oil and garlic.

Cook about 10 minutes.

Add can of paste - if you like thick gravy add all 6 oz. - experiment - if after adding paste you think it’s too thick add a little water.

Cook another 10 minutes on low heat.

Add your herbs and some salt and pepper (remember you can always add more later).

Cook uncovered another 10 minutes.

Taste and correct for seasoning.

 Serve with your favorite pasta.



If there is a little gravy left, I make Penne and Vodka Sauce - it’s easy:

         Gently heat some tomato gravy (approximately 2 cups) - about 5 minutes

         Add 1/4 cup of vodka and let that cook down - about 5 minutes

         Add 1 cup light (or heavy) cream and cook another 5 minutes until thick

         Add some Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to taste

         Add your cooked and drained penne.


 My nephew Michael makes the best Vodka Sauce but that fink won’t give me his recipe....