Put the olive oil in a pan, add the garlic which has been crushed with the side of a knife, and sauté until fragrant. Add the roughly chopped up vegetables.
Sauté slowly over medium heat until the vegetables are a little browned around the edges.
Add all the tomatoes at once, and mix with the sautéed vegetables, scooping them up from the bottom of the pot.
Raise the heat to high. After 3 minutes the tomatoes will start to soften and fall apart. Add the salt at this point.
Use a wooden or bamboo spatula to mash the tomatoes against the sides of the pan. They'll be crushed easily since they will be quite soft by this point.
When all the tomatoes have been softened and crushed, set the heat to low-medium and simmer for about 10 minutes.
When the sauce has reduced by about 20%, it's done. Strain the sauce at this point. You can also push it through a wide-mesh sieve.
When the sauce is strained it looks like this. The bowl on the far side contains the skins and meat of tomatoes that were left over.
I made a lot this time so I packed it in jars. Prepare some jars (like empty jam jars, for example) by sterilizing them in boiling water.
I used a variety of differently sized jars. Fill them all to the top as shown in Step 9, leaving no gap at the top.
Put on the lids, and place the jars upside down in a deep pot and completely immerse in hot water. Boil for 20 minutes to sterilize.
Story Behind this Recipe
All-purpose, basic tomato sauce is not just limited to italian dishes - it's adaptable in many ways, so please try this out.
If sterilizing jars is too much work, you can freeze the sauce in ziplock bags. The reason why I used different size jars is that I use different amounts when use the tomato sauce for making pizza sauce vs. making pasta sauce. I haven't added any spices or herbs, and just a minimal amount of salt, so that the sauce can stay flexible enough to be used in various recipes.