Thursday, September 29, 2011

Pasta Sauces

I recently saw a commercial in which Ragu and Prego were compared in a taste test. I think Prego won, even among regular Ragu-ers.

In other words, among people with lousy taste in spaghetti sauce, when choosing between two mediocre sauces, one of them did, in fact, have to win.

And then there was the Chef Boyar-dee commercial, in which we were told the history of this American staple, how a restaurant's pasta sauce became so popular that people were asking for the recipe and instead, they started sending it home with them.

In other words, back in the 1920s, Americans had no idea how to make a decent pasta sauce.


  1. I'm a pasta sauce snob, since my step father was Italian, and a darned fine cook himself (my mother couldn't boil water). And I lived in Italy for a year, learning, among other things, how to cook the sauces typical of different regions. Only in extreme circumstances will I use canned or jarred spaghetti sauce. Too salty, for one thing. Do you know of an acceptable brand? I'm always on the lookout for that emergency stash to feed unexpected company (real sauce takes hours to cook).

  2. Ha!

    Sarah, we generally make a stock pot of sauce and freeze it in portions -- perhaps you already do that.

  3. I'm right there with you, Sarah, which means I can't really do much to recommend a sauce--I always cook my own, though often I skimp on the time I take. Recently, we've bought some Newman's Own Marinara, but I haven't really had much of it because I'm avoiding pasta and most carbs. But Lauren likes it pretty well.

    Although I've been happy with my own methods, I'd be pretty curious to get your recipe if you're willing to share it.