Tomato sauce with sausage

Here is a simple dish for fresh tomato sauce with pasta made from whole tomatoes. It takes some time to simmer the sauce, but this process has the added benefit of making your home smell wonderful. This is ideal for a Sunday afternoon.

I make this about once a week stopping by the farmers market to pick up bruIsed tomatoes on the cheap. I am told that this makes great leftovers and can be frozen, but somehow we never seem to have any left.

Prep time: 15-20 minutes
Simmer time: 2-4 hours
Final prep: 15 minutes


  • 2-3 lbs. fresh tomatoes
  • 1 lb. sausage (with the skin removed)
  • 1 medium onion (chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • Olive oil (several tablespoons worth)
  • Handful of fresh basil (chopped) or 2 Tbl
  • ½ cup chicken or beef stock (optional)
  • Salt & Pepper (to taste)
  • 1 lb. of pasta (I love penne but any pasta will suffice)
  • Grated parmesan cheese


  • Large pot for sauce
  • Large pot for pasta
  • Cutting board
  • Chef’s knife for chopping
  • Small knife for pitting tomatoes
  • Slotted spoon
  • Large bowl
  • Medium bowl
  • Measuring cup
  • Colander or strainer
  • Large serving dish


Prep tomatoes

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  2. Score tomatoes — just enough to break the skin
  3. Drop tomatoes into boiling water for 1 minute. (Just enough time for skin to separate)
  4. With slotted spoon remove tomatoes to large bowl and let cool.

Prepare sauce

  1. Chop onion and garlic.
  2. Coat bottom of second pot with olive oil. Add onion and garlic and simmer over low heat until golden brown — (15 - 20 minutes).
  3. Chop basil and add to simmering onions. Note: reserve some basil to sprinkle on top of pasta just prior to serving.
  4. When golden translucent remove onion to medium bowl and set aside.
  5. Coat pan with some more olive oil and over medium heat cook sausage. Break up chunks to form small bits as it cooks.
  6. When sausage is cooked through, return onions to pot.


  1. Now that tomatoes are cooled, remove and discard the skin which should peal off easily.
  2. Remove stems if they are thick by cutting with a small knife.
  3. Pour stemmed and pealed tomatoes into pot with sausage and onions.
  4. Add a few glugs of olive oil for good measure.
  5. Add chicken stock or beef stock if you have it. (optional: adds a nice depth of flavor)
  6. Cover and simmer for 2-5 hours over low heat. Stir occasionally.

When ready for meal.

  1. Bring large pot of water to boil.
  2. Once boiling add a large pinch of salt.
  3. Add pasta stirring occasionally.
  4. Cook pasta until done (follow directions on packaging) 10 to 12 minutes.
  5. Before draining pasta use measuring cup to remove about 1 cup of starchy water from pasta. Set aside.
  6. When pasta is cooked drain pasta in colander.
  7. Add drained pasta to serving dish.
  8. Ladle sauce onto pasta.
  9. Add a little starchy water to pasta and sauce (about ¼ cup)
  10. Stir pasta and let sit for 5-10 minutes. The pasta will absorb the sauce and water while it sits.
  11. Sprinkle remaining basil on top.
  12. Serve with parmesan cheese and enjoy.

What you should know

Save remaining starchy water for leftovers. Before placing in the refrigerator add some additional pasta water to the storage container. The pasta will absorb this over time and in the process remain soft and moist.

Re: Tomato sauce from fresh tomatoes with sausage and pasta