Shop-bought tomato sauces often contain refined sugars, so I make my own and pack it with as many veggies as I can. I use balsamic vinegar, onions and carrots to naturally sweeten the sauce and reduce the sharpness. You can adapt this recipe by adding other ingredients, such as chopped mushrooms or even a pinch of chilli powder/cayenne pepper/smoked paprika for an extra spicy kick. It’s also a great way of using up vegetables that are getting old. I like to serve mine with courgetti (see the artwork of my sister below) and my broccoli pizzas.
Makes approx. 4 servings
1 knob of butter or coconut oil
2 tsp dried herbs (I use herbes de Provence)
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 large grated carrots
2 tins chopped tomatoes
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 large handfuls baby spinach
1 x 400g cooked kidney beans (optional, but a good source of protein)
1.) Melt the butter on a low heat in a pan. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion and garlic turn soft and clear but not browned.
2.) Then add the carrots and stir in, leaving them to soften for 5 minutes.
3.) Pour in the tomatoes, dried herbs and balsamic vinegar and season to taste.
4.) Bring the sauce to the boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for at least 30 minutes- the longer you leave it, the more the flavours will develop. Make sure to stir the sauce every so often.
5.) Add the kidney beans (if using) and spinach 5 minutes before the end and stir the sauce to wilt the spinach and heat the beans through.
6.) When the amount of liquid has reduced and the sauce isn’t too runny, remove from the heat.
For a smoother sauce, blend it.