This is your go-to sauce for any occasion, and a great starting block for any more complex recipe. It's simple, delicious, and incredibly easy — plus, it can be made in bulk and frozen or refrigerated in anticipation of future cravings.
1 large can of whole, peeled San Marzano tomatoes without added seasoning (some brands come with whole basil leaves, that's okay! We've had great success with the Cento brand)
1 stick of celery
1 large carrot
1 teaspoon sugar
Salt, to taste
A little on the spicy side, this hearty sauce is thick, textured, and no pushover. If you've never made a meat sauce before, this is a great place to start!
Basic Base Sauce (see above)
Pancetta (If you really want to get serious, find a butcher that sells guanciale, a.k.a. pork cheek — if you really don't want to get serious, regular bacon will suffice, but pancetta is a great medium and can easily be found in most stores)
One yellow onion
Red pepper flakes
Grated Pecorino Romano
White Pasta e Fagioli With Rosemary
Nothing beats this dressed-up, tomato-free version of pasta e fagioli on a winter night. Half-soup, half-stew, all amazing, this is definitely one for the record books. This dish is traditionally made with leftover pieces of broken-up pasta, which creates a great texture. However, since you probably don't keep a ton of that lying around, any long pasta will work, though the thicker the better!
2 cans unseasoned garbanzo beans
Fresh rosemary (to taste, but the more the better — about 6-8 sprigs should do the trick)
1 clove garlic
1 16oz. package chicken or vegetable broth
Spaghetti or other long pasta, broken up into smaller, irregular pieces. Use the same amount you would for a normal, whole pasta.
Grated parmesan cheese
Salt, to taste
Photo: Courtesy of Dolce & Gabbana.