1.5-2lbs ground meat of your choice
1 yellow or purple onion, not sweet, diced and divided in half
1 bulb garlic, minded and divided in half
4 13oz boxes cirio crushed tomatoes
1 .66oz container basil
1 green pepper, diced
1 small container mushrooms, stems removed and diced
1 oz olive oil
salt & pepper to taste
for sweet: add 1 red pepper, diced
for spicy: add red pepper flakes to taste
if it's too sweet: red wine vinegar to taste
here's what you do:
sauté half the onion and garlic with olive oil in a medium stock pot — preferably cast iron — over medium to high heat. if you're using red pepper for sweetness, this is the time to add it. when your onions are soft and translucent, add the tomatoes and basil.
stir that shit and let it start bubbling. when you see a couple little bubbles, throw a lid on in, turn it down and let it simmer as long as you can. at least an hour. watch a movie. or have some sex. or both.
leave it on the heat while you use and emersion blender to make it smooth. this is the time to add salt and pepper. you'll probably need plenty of salt. if you're adding red pepper flakes, wine or vinegar, now is the time. taste it. you'll know what's missing.
put the lid back on that and sauté your leftover onion and garlic with your meat, green pepper and mushrooms over high heat in a separate sauté pan. when it's done, strain the fat out and dump it all right in your stock pot with your sauce.
stir and let the flavors sit together for 5-10 minutes before serving.
act like this was very hard to do and you're serving the product of several hours' labor. i mean, really, you watched a rom com and got laid while this cooked. but it's super impressive to say you made the sauce yourself and people will feel special that you took the time. like rice krispy treats with sea salt and brown butter.
if you're making pasta, i like to boil it in chicken stock rather than water. it's done when you throw it against the wall and it sticks. seriously. but remove it quickly, if that shit dries it could damage the paint.
if you're doing squash, steam it half the cooking time and roast it with a little olive oil the second half.