Pawley's Island Marinara Sauce

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The family vacations I always remember taking as a kid were our trips to Pawley’s Island, South Carolina. We rented one big house and all of my aunts, uncles, and cousins spent the week together.

Each family took turns cooking a meal. For my uncle Denny, it was always seafood; Aunt Joan always made pizzas; and I remember my family always made pasta. 

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There was nothing better than being gathered around a huge table with my cousinswho I considered siblingseating and laughing. 

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For this week's challenge, I wanted the girls to pull up some food memories from Labor Days past that reminded them of good times with family and friends.

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I decided to go with my family’s go-to pasta, but made this version with zucchini noodles insteada great option if you are looking for something a little lighter. I made my favorite marinara sauce and topped it with some grilled portabella mushrooms. 

I can’t wait to take my daughter on a family vacation for the first time, and to see the joy on her face as she hangs out with all of her cousins.


Pawley's Island Marinara Sauce


  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 7 garlic cloves, peeled + slivered OR 3 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • One 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano, more to taste


  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat, then add the garlic. When the garlic begins to look golden (but not burnt), add the tomatoes, salt, basil, red pepper flakes, and dried oregano.
  2. Cover and allow to cook for 20 minutes. Enjoy!
: @bluebirdandblackberries

: @bluebirdandblackberries

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