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Old 06-17-2007, 09:07 AM   #1
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Italian Gravy: Pls Help Complete Recipe

Here is a recipe for Italian gravy. It calls for one 6 oz. can of tomato paste, and apparently for tomato puree as well, but no amount is given. Any suggestion how much to use? I doubt we'll make this amount in total (3 quarts), but is there a typical ratio of paste to puree? Also, I don't think I've ever used puree before. Can I just puree canned san Marzano tomatoes?

Thanks in advance.

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Old 06-17-2007, 10:24 AM   #2
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The puree is left out of the ingredients list so you don't know how much to use. I am also not accustomed to seeing some if the listed ingredients in a gravy recipe. I'd seek out a different recipe.

There are tons of good sauce recipes here on DC. Use the search function to find one.
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Old 06-17-2007, 11:08 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RRH
Here is a recipe for Italian gravy. It calls for one 6 oz. can of tomato paste, and apparently for tomato puree as well, but no amount is given. Any suggestion how much to use? I doubt we'll make this amount in total (3 quarts), but is there a typical ratio of paste to puree? Also, I don't think I've ever used puree before. Can I just puree canned san Marzano tomatoes?

Thanks in advance.
I'd not worry about the puree. I think what they are after is a rich red color to your gravy..I would just puree you San Maranzanos and add them in if you don't care for chunks of tomatoes in your gravy. You can even open an 8oz, can of tomatoe sauce and add it a little at a time to get the color..When I do my gravy, I use imported dried mushrooms that I've rehydrated and chopped very fine. This will give you a nice thick gravy that clings to your pasta better. I also add the strained liquid from those mushrooms to darken my gravy to a rich browm color. The gravy will bot be as acidic and tomatoey tasting...MY DH's mom who was Italian taught me this method and I've used it for years. I hope I've helped a little..It's just a matter of adding a little at a time to get the color and taste you seek..
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Old 06-17-2007, 01:27 PM   #4
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Okay, you have to trust me on this, because this recipe is so close to my grandmother's, it scares me. The amount of tomato puree should equal the amount of liquid, which in this case is the stock and the wine, and that amounts to 1-1/2 quarts, or 48 ounces. One can of tomato puree is 28 ounces, so buy two and save the leftover puree for some other use.

But, I also agree with Andy about some of the "other ingredients." All the carrot and celery and mushroom are pretty much turning what should be a sauce into a vegetable salad.
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Old 06-18-2007, 11:07 AM   #5
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The amount of tomato puree should equal the amount of liquid, which in this case is the stock and the wine, and that amounts to 1-1/2 quarts, or 48 ounces. One can of tomato puree is 28 ounces, so buy two and save the leftover puree for some other use.
Thanks so much. I will use a calculator to scale it all down to one meal; if it turns out well we'll probably make it in larger quantities (as with Bolognese).
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Old 06-18-2007, 12:05 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RRH
Thanks so much. I will use a calculator to scale it all down to one meal; if it turns out well we'll probably make it in larger quantities (as with Bolognese).
I always make my sauce in large quantities because it freezes well. I just split the meatballs and sausages among the number of containers I think I will need to hold all the left over sauce ( I count 1 meatball and one sausage link per person) and I have several ready-made meals where all I need to do is thaw the sauce, cook the macaroni, and slice the bread.

Oh, and the sauce, and the meatballs and sausage inside, thaw well in a microwave, where most other things don't.
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Old 06-18-2007, 12:10 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Caine
I always make my sauce in large quantities because it freezes well. I just split the meatballs and sausages among the number of containers I think I will need to hold all the left over sauce ( I count 1 meatball and one sausage link per person) and I have several ready-made meals where all I need to do is thaw the sauce, cook the macaroni, and slice the bread.

Oh, and the sauce, and the meatballs and sausage inside, thaw well in a microwave, where most other things don't.

I do the same. Making the sauce and with the meats takes a significant time commitment. There is no point in making just enough for a meal.
BTW, I usually make meatballs, sausages and some stew meat chunks in the sauce and add some pork bones for added flavor.
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Old 06-21-2007, 04:48 PM   #8
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Just signed up for this forum, and happened to see the gravy topic first thing. I married a New York (Bronx) Italian about 25 years ago, and it took several years for me to adjust calling spagetti sauce, gravy. To everyone I knew, gravy was brown and went over mashed potatoes. I spent the next few years learning how to cook, again.



This is what we use to do also, "make meatballs, sausages and some stew meat chunks in the sauce and add some pork bones for added flavor" and I always left the puree out of the gravy. My mother in law used both puree and a little paste, but like me, I don't think she followed a set recipe either. I don't believe she would ever have put the vegies in the gravy, but it sounds like something I would like.
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Old 06-21-2007, 05:26 PM   #9
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I've always pureed my own whole tomatoes.
Tomato paste can give you heartburn.
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Old 06-21-2007, 05:54 PM   #10
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It's only gravy if you put meat in it. No meat, it's sauce.

How does tomato paste give someone heartburn? It's only squished tomatoes, extremely reduced. Onions on the other hand, well now THOSE will give me heartburn!
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