One of my hands down favorite make ahead “Go To” meals is red sauce. I love to watch the big red and meaty pan of sauce bubbling away on my stove. There are just so many things you can do with red sauce The sauce is be made with ingredients that are usually in your garden, refrigerator and pantry.
Red and Meaty Sauce
To a large pot add:
2 tablespoons oil
1 pound ground meat, such as beef, preferably organic
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Brown the beef and add:
1 diced onion
1 peeled and diced carrot
2 diced celery stalks.
Let all these ingredients become friendly in the pan. (Make sure you’re adding salt and pepper and red pepper flakes as you go.) After about 5-7 minutes add:
1-1 1/2 cups red or white wine
When the wine is evaporated add:
1-11/2 cups whole milk which will help tenderize the meat.
When the milk is gone add:
2, 28 to 32 ounce cans of whole tomatoes that have gone for a ride in a food processor or you’ve broken up with your hands.
2 to 3 tablespoons of brown sugar to balance the acidity of the tomato and more salt and pepper to taste.
Bring this yummy mixture to a low boil and then lower the heat and give it a stir every so often over the course of the next couple of hours. When it’s nice and thick add:
chopped fresh herbs to taste such as parsley, oregano, basil and even a little thyme if you have some.
A little more tasting, a little more adjusting then, allow it to cool. Cover the sauce and store it in the fridge.
I use this sauce as a base for casserole dishes such as lasagna or manicotti or simply serve it over vegetables or of course, pasta. Often times I make several casserole dishes with this big pot of sauce and freeze them for when I need emergency dinners. Just know that freezing can cause tomato sauce to separate so there’s nothing you’ve done wrong, that’s just something that happens to tomato products when they’ve been frozen.
Avid home cook and passionate instructor