Meaty Slow Cooked Pasta Sauce

1/2 pound ground chuck
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 14.5-ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup red wine
2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

In a large sauté pan over medium heat, brown the meat with the onion. Drain any accumulated grease on a paper towel-lined plate; set aside. Place remaining ingredients into a 4-quart crockpot, give it a stir, and add the beef and onion mixture, stirring once more. Cover and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours. When cooking is finished, remove the lid and allow it to cool for 30 minutes. Pour the sauce, in two batches, into a food processor, and process until smooth. Serve with meatballs, ravioli, or your favorite pasta. Poured into an attractive jar, labeled, and tied with a colorful ribbon, it makes a lovely and welcome hostess gift.

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