Sep 06

Home-made Tomato Sauce


I made home-made tomato sauce this evening for dinner. That’s not exactly news, I’ve made pasta sauces before, but this is the first time I did it without a recipe and the results exceeded my expectations.

I started by quartering about 1 pound of Crimini mushrooms that didn’t make it into dinner last week.

They got tossed into a rocket hot pan with some olive oil and sauteed over medium heat (I turned the heat down once the oil went it) until they just turned golden brown.

A onion (roughly chopped) went in next along with a little salt. That was sauteed for 5 to 10 minutes before I added a fist full of chopped sage (from the garden) and some garlic to the party.

I continued to brown everything over medium heat until the sage and garlic were fragrant and everything else was nice and toasty. The meat went in at that point – beef (1/2 lb), pork (1/4 lb), and lamb (1/4 lb) that had been mixed with 3 or 4 healthy flatware teaspoons of yogurt; I didn’t have any bread for a panade and hoped it would work as a substitution.

Once the meat had mostly browned but was still pink in some spots I added a healthy amount – 2 or 3 turns around the pan – of white wine (Bent Creek Chardonnay).

I left that to simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes or to let the wine reduce and turn my attention to a 28 ounce can of organic whole tomatoes. I drained the tomatoes, reserving the juice, so I could crush them with my hands and added them to the pan with a few bay leaves once the wine had reduced by 1/4 to 1/2.

The sauce simmered, covered, over low heat for an hour while I escaped the heat of the kitchen and read in the hammock 🙂

After an hour, I added a slurry of cold milk (about 1 cup) and cornstarch (2 flatware teaspoons) and a fistful of fresh basil (also from the garden). Everything was stirred about until the color was uniform, then I covered the pan again and left it to simmer for another 30 minutes.

Aside from looking pretty with it’s patchwork of green, pink, white and brown, it smells great and tastes even better. The sauce is floral, sweet, earthy, and surprisingly creamy for how little dairy was used.

I’m serving it over some frozen mushroom ravioli (also left over from last week) with some homemade sangria and I have a feeling I will be be hard-pressed to avoid seconds!

1 comment

  1. -the mama

    I betcha the tomato sauce will be even mo better!

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