Tomato Sauce with Olive Oil and Chopped Vegetables

Updated February 23, 2016

The carrot and celery in this sauce are put in a crudo, which means without the usual separate and preliminary sautéeing procedure, along with the tomatoes. The sweetness of carrot and the fragrance of celery contribute depth to the fresh tomato flavor of the sauce.

Recommended pasta: This is an all-purpose sauce for most cuts of factory-made pasta, particularly spaghettini and penne.May be frozen when done.

Making Fresh Tomatoes Ready for Sauce: Unless the recipe indicates otherwise, fresh, ripe tomatoes must be prepared to use for sauce following one of the two methods given below. The blanching method can lead to a meatier, more rustic consistency. The food mill method produces a silkier, smoother sauce.

The Blanching Method: Plunge the tomatoes in boiling water for a minute or less. Drain them and, as soon as they are cool enough to handle, skin them, and cut them up in coarse pieces.

The Food Mill Method: Wash the tomatoes in cold water, cut them lengthwise in half, and put them in a covered saucepan. Turn on the heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes. Set a food mill fitted with the disk with the largest holes over a bowl. Transfer the tomatoes with any of their juices to the mill and puree.

For6 servings



Total Timeunder 1 hour

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

One Pot MealYes

OccasionFamily Get-together

Dietary Considerationvegetarian

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Mealdinner, lunch

Taste and Texturelight

Type of Dishpasta sauce


  • 2 pounds fresh, ripe tomatoes, prepared as described below, OR 2 cups canned imported Italian plum tomatoes, cut up, with their juice
  • 2/3 cup chopped carrot
  • 2/3 cup chopped celery
  • 2/3 cup chopped onion
  • Salt
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 to 1½ pounds pasta


Put either the prepared fresh tomatoes or the canned in a saucepan, add the carrot, celery, onion, and salt, and cook with no cover on the pan at a slow, steady simmer for 30 minutes. Stir from time to time.

Add the olive oil, raise the heat slightly to bring to a somewhat stronger simmer, and stir occasionally, while reducing the tomato to as much of a pulp as you can with the back of the spoon. Cook for 15 minutes, then taste and correct for salt.


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