20 Minute (or so) Marinara Sauce

I always love chatting with Matt Swaim each Thursday morning about Bible foods and herbs. Today we chatted about salt, and the Biblical roots of this common seasoning.

Salt was mined from the Dead Sea during Bible days so it had all the good minerals intact.

Today there are myriad kinds of salt – from regular to Kosher to naturally vivid colored salts, like green and black.

If you can, use a “good” salt, like sea salt or Himalayan salt. Kosher salt has no additives and it’s a chef favorite.

Here’s a recipe for a quick and yummy Marinara sauce using good quality canned tomatoes. Some cooks believe the seeds make the sauce bitter so they sieve the seeds out. I just leave them in and the sauce tastes just fine to me. You do what you want!


Use a large sauté pan or skillet with lots of surface room on the bottom to make the sauce cook quicker.


2  cans, 28 to 35 oz each whole San Marzano tomatoes with basil or plain

2/3  cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons (6 cloves or so) garlic

Couple pinches or so red pepper flakes or 1 teaspoon black pepper

Couple squeezes anchovy paste (secret ingredient – gives flavor but it’s not fishy)

1-1/2  teaspoons salt or to taste

1 heaping teaspoon dried basil and 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, more to taste (I usually add more of each) 


Remove tomatoes from can and smoosh with potato masher or hands. Pour 1 cup water into can and swish around. Reserve.

In a large sauté, over medium low heat, heat oil and add garlic, red pepper and anchovy paste. Stir until garlic gets golden, but be careful. Don’t let it get brown or it will be burned. Add tomatoes and mash with potato masher. Add reserved water, salt, basil and oregano. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer and cook about 20 minutes or so. Sauce will thicken up.

After cooling, pour into freezer containers. Freeze several months.

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