Monday, March 22, 2010

Southwestern Marinara

Printable Recipe

This recipe came from my sister, and it is one of my family's favorite meals.

2 tsp olive oil, more if needed (I always use more - I just eyeball it, according to how much onion I'm using)
1 small onion, chpd
minced garlic, to taste
2 (14-oz) cans tomatoes, undrained and tomatoes cut up
2 tsp sugar
1/2 - 1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 - 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
3 -4 large leaves of fresh basil, more if desired - cut up
8 stems of fresh cilantro, more if desired (just the leaves, not the stems)  - cut up

1-lb box pasta of choice, cooked according to package directions
Parmesan cheese, for sprinkling on top

In a large skillet that has a lid, saute the onions and garlic in hot oil, until onions are tender-crisp. Do not overbrown the garlic.

Add the tomatoes, sugar, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 30 - 40 minutes. You can remove the lid for the last 10 minutes of cooking, to thicken the sauce, if you desire. Meanwhile, prepare pasta of choice.

Cut up the basil leaves by rolling them up tightly, and cutting them into thin strips with either a sharp knife, or a pizza cutter. I then crisscross the pizza cutter, to cut the strips short. To cut up the cilantro leaves, just run a sharp knife or pizza cutter through them, until the are cut up fine. Add the herbs to the sauce the last few minutes of cooking. If you leave them in longer, they can taste a little bitter if cooked too long.

Dish hot pasta in bowl, and cover with sauce. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, if desired.


You can serve this with any sort of pasta, cheese tortellini, or even ravioli. I usually use either bow tie pasta, or rigatoni. I would really like to try ravioli sometime, though. Serve with a nice crusty bread and a green salad.

You can make this as spicy as you like, by adding as much, or as little pepper and crushed red pepper flakes.


Kathleen said...

I can see why this is a family favorite. It looks delicious!!

Pam said...

Kathy, this looks delicious! Great idea for dinner tonight! Thanks!

Cinnamon-Girl said...

This is so unique with cilantro in it! I bet it's delicious! The cute cupcake liners you asked me about came from Michael's Arts and Crafts store.

The Sugar Queen said...

Thanks, Cinnamon-Girl! The cilantro gives it a nice, fresh flavor.

Thanks for letting me know about the cupcake liners. it has been forever, since I've been to a Michael's, but I may just make a special trip to one to try to find those.