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If you have ever made Marcella Hazan’s glorious butter and onion tomato sauce, then you know that it can take a bit of time to make (even though it is considered to be the simplest of her sauce recipes). It tastes phenomenal, but I would rather save it for a Sunday dinner. Here is a ‘weeknight version‘ that’s ready in half the time of the original recipe. The sauce is cooked at a higher temperature but the butter and onion flavours still shine through.

Prep time:
Cook time:
Servings: 4-6


Cost per serving $0.73 view details
  • 2 cups (500 ml) plain pureed tomato sauce
  • 5 tbsp (70 g) unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 or 2 handfuls Italian grated cheese (Parmesan, Grana Padano, or Romano)
  • 1 lb (450-500 g) Bavette pasta (or other long pasta)


  1. Heat the ingredients in a small or medium covered saucepan, over high heat. When the sauce starts to boil, slightly reduce heat to medium-high and leave the lid ajar. Continue cooking for another 15-20 minutes. In the meantime, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to package instructions. Discard the onion from the sauce and toss with well drained pasta. Sprinkle a couple of handfuls of your choice of grated Italian cheese and serve.


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Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving %DV
Serving Size 171g
Recipe makes 4 servings
Calories 168  
Calories from Fat 129 77%
Total Fat 14.65g 18%
Saturated Fat 9.17g 37%
Trans Fat 0.0g  
Cholesterol 38mg 13%
Sodium 681mg 28%
Potassium 469mg 13%
Total Carbs 9.29g 2%
Dietary Fiber 2.4g 8%
Sugars 6.56g 4%
Protein 2.13g 3%
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