I'm going to teach you how to make a sauce from scratch, cook a beautiful pasta and get dinner on the table in 20...

My friends are still always surprised when I tell them how incredibly simple a delicious tomato sauce is to cook from scratch. Here it is. Start with the very best ingredients.

  1. Good quality canned tomatoes (nothing added)
  2. Extra virgin olive oil
  3. Coarse salt
  4. Fresh basil
  5. A chunk of Parmesan cheese

That's it. Let's begin!

Recipe & Creative Direction Mari Loewen. Food styling Marisa Curatolo. Photography Cory Aronec.

Recipe & Creative Direction Mari Loewen. Food styling Marisa Curatolo. Photography Cory Aronec.

Maria De Nardi's Go To Pasta2
Maria De Nardi's Go To Pasta3
  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • 4Servings


  • 2 28-ounce cans whole San Marzano tomatoes
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, whole
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 4 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 pound good quality fettuccine
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, and more for shavings to serve

Fresh greens with lemon vinaigrette

  • 1 package mixed salad greens

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

  • 1/4 cup Freshly grated Parmesan cheese


For vinaigrette, in small jar, shake ingredients until emulsified, set aside.

Fro pasta, heat olive oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add tomatoes and garlic and cook about 10 minutes. Using a potato masher, mash the tomatoes and garlic in skillet, add salt and basil leaves and cook 10 more minutes reducing as much as possible. 

Meanwhile, in large pot of boiling well-salted water, cook fettuccine until tender but firm, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain (reserving 1/2 cup pasta water) and add to tomato sauce, toss until well coated; add pasta water and turn up the heat to reduce for a few minutes until pasta is well coated. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese and fresh basil leaves.

Toss salad greens with lemon vinaigrette. Serve pasta with salad toped with more grated Parmesan cheese.