I take my spaghetti very seriously. Maybe it’s my Italian relatives who taught me to respect my pasta, or maybe it’s a serious childhood obsession with a meal that offered up a chance to get completely messy without consequence or scolding. But either way, spaghetti is a very serious affair around here.
I’ve been on the hunt for absolute perfection in a spaghetti or marinara sauce recipe for several years now. A good, clean, homemade spaghetti sauce or marinara that clings to the pasta just enough, but not too much, has an explosion of flavor with every bite and just makes you want to wrap yourself up in a big red, saucy noodle and snuggle. Okay… maybe that was a bit much. But you get my point… right?
Somebody suggested that I roast my tomatoes and garlic before making my sauce and I just about kicked myself for not thinking of it to begin with. So in the oven they went until the tomatoes were wilted and the garlic cloves were popping out of their thin-skined wrapper, and from there they went in to the processor with the other ingredients.
Now, you know I would not be sharing this recipe with you if it wasn’t good. In fact, my family raved about it. My husband went so far as to say that it was something you’d get in a top-quality restaurant. I don’t know about all that, but it was good. I’ll say that much.
Sadly, it’s still not what I’m going for in a sauce. So the quest continues. But in the mean time, I think you’ll enjoy this one. It’s very kiddo friendly too. Mini Chef scarfed it down without a word (which is his highest praise).
I hope you enjoy it too.
Clean Eating Garlic Parmesan Marinara
(Makes approximately 4 cups)
- 1 medium head of garlic
- 2 pounds tomatoes
- 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth, no sugar added (low sodium too)
- 1 teaspoon dry basil
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan (fresh is best)
- Salt to taste
- Cut the top off your garlic head so that the cloves are all exposed, and spray with a light coat of olive oil to prevent burning.
- Clean your tomatoes as usual and cut in half.
- Spray a cookie sheet with a light coat of olive oil and place the garlic and tomatoes on the tray. Bake at 350 F. for about 30-45 minutes or until the garlic heads start to pop out of the head.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.
- Transfer to a food processor, add all other ingredients and blend until smooth.