- 3 cups canned peeled tomatoes in their liquid
- 4 large garlic cloves, lightly crushed
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil or fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Drain the tomatoes in a strainer set over a medium bowl. Scoop out and discard any seeds from the tomatoes. Using your hands, a fork or a potato masher, crush the tomatoes well and place in a separate bowl; reserve their liquid for another use.
- In a medium nonreactive saucepan, cook the garlic in the olive oil over moderate heat until golden. Add the tomatoes and salt; season with pepper. Stir in the basil and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Discard the garlic. To make a smooth sauce, leave the garlic cloves in and pass the sauce through a food mill.
Omit the basil, cover the sauce tightly and refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Before serving, stir in the basil and reheat gently.