Italian Tomato Cream Sauce

P1030552.JPGChristmas Eve is my favorite night of the year and I look forward to it all year long. It is a time when we gather as a family, give gifts, reflect on the gift of the Savior Jesus Christ and remember those who are no longer with us. Our Italian American family celebrates with a multi-course feast. The above photo shows part of the fish course one recent Christmas Eve. It is followed by a pasta course; some years we have lasagna, other years we eat homemade ravioli. If we are having ravioli, it is served with this tomato cream sauce. The sauce goes well not only with ravioli but with tortellini or spinach fettuccine. For the best tasting sauce, make it the day before you want to serve it. The flavors need time to mature. I usually double this recipe for Christmas Eve. Have some nice, crusty bread on hand to dip in the sauce.
Merry Christmas, Buon Natale.

Italian Tomato Cream Sauce
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 (14 oz.) can diced tomatoes with juice
3 Tbsp. fresh chopped basil
2 Tbsp. fresh chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
1 tsp. dried Greek oregano
1-2 tsp. sugar
salt and pepper to taste
3/4-1 c. heavy cream

In a saucepan combine oil and garlic. Turn the heat to medium and sauté garlic until soft and fragrant but not brown. Puree the tomatoes in a blender then add them to the garlic and oil. Add herbs and salt and pepper. Cover and let cook 15-20 minutes to thicken slightly. Add the cream and heat until warm but do not boil. Taste and check for salt, pepper, and sugar. This is enough sauce for 3/4 lb. pasta.

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