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Posted by Rachel R. Vanderveen on Thursday, February 7th, 2013 at 12:05pm.

Today, I’m going to share the most amazing recipes with you. It will become your friend and your back-up as it has become mine. It has only FOUR ingredients, and even the frazzled, half-crazy moms of this city can pull it off and look like a genius in less than 2 minutes of prep time. It is real authentic Italian cooking and I think you’ll be impressed with the dimension of flavour with so few ingredients, as I have been. I like to use this recipe in the following situations:


1)      I’ve lost track of reality while cruising Facebook vigorously cleaning my house and taking my children on multiple trips to the library and the dinner hour has crept up out of nowhere.

2)      Fresh groceries are nowhere to be found and company is coming for dinner.

3)      I have almost no time for prep because I have meetings in the evening, and I have to leave dinner up to Clint to serve.


Here it is. Enjoy my friends.


Authentic Italian Red Sauce



2 Cans of Costco diced tomatoes

1/3 of a full stick of butter. (I’m talking a third of the regular sized package of butter ladies, not the little sticks of butter. There’s a reason why the blog is called Fat off the Land).

One onion halved

Salt and Pepper


In your largest frying pan, dump in both cans of diced tomatoes, juice and all. Throw in your third of a stick of butter. (Maybe have a child or husband do this for you, so that you can dissociate yourself from how much butter is in there). Cut your onion in half and place each half flat side down in the pan. (For those with a taste for garlic, you can stick 2 or 3 whole cloves of garlic as well) Turn your heat on low, and let it simmer for about 45 minutes to an Hour, stirring occasionally and mashing the pieces of tomato with a fork. You know it’s done when the tomatoes separate from the fat of the butter, and you see the fat has turned blood red. Remove the onion halves (and garlic cloves if you added them) and throw in the garbage. Toss the red sauce in a bowl with whatever pasta you have on hand. Spaghetti is my family’s favourite.

You will find that this recipe is dramatic on its own. However, as you grow the recipe and make it your own, you can add Italian sausage, mushrooms, artichokes, or any other combination of one or more of those ingredients. I like some fresh basil on top and maybe some fresh parm.  As I’ve played around more and more with Italian cooking, I have discovered that very simple flavours can make a dish outstanding, so don’t add too many things. Let the flavours in this meal speak for themselves.

I like to serve this with a crisp salad, but in the case where there are no fresh groceries, I’ve been known to cruise my frozen vegetables when I have to. I really like the frozen organic green beans from Costco.

Rachel Vanderveen

The Vanderveen Team
Maxwell South Star Realty
Phone: 403.253.5678 Fax: 403.592.6736

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