Quick Tomato Sauce

All, Sauces

Here’s a quick tomato sauce (or gravy) that is delicious over egg dishes, tamales, or chiles rellenos. It doesn’t have any chile powder in it, so it’s flavor is different than enchilada sauce. It’s also easier to make. In the photo at right, it is shown on a delicious breakfast or brunch dish called a Green Chile Casserole.

INGREDIENTS

1 can of tomato sauce (14 oz.)
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

Open the can of tomato sauce and keep it handy. Heat the oil in a sauce pan until it is shimmering, and add the flour. Stir and cook until the mixture looks light brown and begins to smell toasty. (This is a “roux”, pronounced “roo”. You have to learn some French to cook, you know.)

Add the tomato sauce gradually, stirring constantly. You will notice that the roux thickens the sauce immediately. Fill the empty tomato sauce can with water, and add about half of it to the sauce. That’s probably all you’ll need, but if you made a little more or less roux, the amount of water you’ll need to add will change.

Bring to a simmer, and quit adding water when the sauce is the consistency you want. Add the spices, taste, and after simmering a few minutes, add more seasonings if you wish. You can also add chopped parsley or cilantro, either to the sauce or to the finished dish as a garnish.