There is marinara, and then there is this MARINARA- the one that I have spent the last two summers perfecting. It took a lot of trial and error, but this is by far the tastiest sauce to ever land on our dinner plates. It’s tangy, slightly sweet, and bursting with the flavor of fresh tomatoes. Want to know the best part? It cooks in a Crock-Pot! Just add the ingredients and let everything simmer together for 3 hours. That’s it. It’s really that simple, and it’s really that g-o-o-d.
The story behind this marinara:
Every year we grow more tomatoes in our garden than we can possibly eat. We’ve grown everything from Santorini, Campari, Cherry, and even Heirloom tomatoes, but the Roma’s are my favorite. They are sweet, hearty, and have just a little zest to them- so delicious. We had them on salads, on sandwiches, and in every other possible way imaginable but there were always dozens of tomatoes hanging on the vine.
Finally, I decided that the solution was to make marinara sauce. Some people have their great-grandmother’s sauce recipe that has been passed down for generations. Unfortunately we are 0% Italian; we don’t have a top-secret family recipe. So instead, some creative trial and error took place. It took two full summers of messes and successes before this sauce was perfected.
Right now I’m looking out my kitchen window at the spot where our garden grows every summer. It’s covered in snow. Sigh. I cannot wait until the warmer weather arrives and we can once again grow tomatoes by the bushel basket! I know spring has to get here eventually, but until then, the fresh tomatoes in this marinara sauce will give us a taste of the sunny days ahead. We hope you enjoy it too!
Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce
6 ripe organic Roma tomatoes, seeds removed, cut into quarters
1 pint organic cherry tomatoes, cut in half
½ sweet onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/3 cup high quality, extra virgin olive oil
2 heaping Tbsp. organic tomato paste
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. dried oregano
1 Tbsp. Italian seasoning
¼ tsp cumin
¼ ground coriander
1 Tbsp. coconut sugar
¼ tsp caraway seeds
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Combine all ingredients in Crock-Pot and gently stir to mix.
Set Crock-Pot to high for 3 hours. (It smells amazing, and you will be tempted, but do not remove the lid while the sauce is cooking!)
Carefully pulse in blender until desired texture is reached.
Enjoy with pasta, on pizza, as a dipping sauce, on sandwiches, or by itself.