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Old 08-02-2010, 10:25 AM   #11
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Saute 2 chopped garlic cloves with 1/2 chopped onion and 1 stalk celery, chopped.
Toss in a couple bay leaves, some oregano, marjoram, parsley, salt, pepper.
Simmer for a while in a bit of good beef stock and red wine.
When reduced a bit, add a can or two of crushed tomatoes, let simmer for an hour
or so.
Adjust seasonings to taste.

(Is this authentic? I dunno, but it is probably what Italian women did for centuries, or something similar. I don't like the word "authentic", because it doesn't have a lot of meaning in the cooking world anymore.)

You really need to decide WHAT you want to cook... there are different sauces for different dishes. Spaghetti and meatballs sauce will have a different taste than chicken cacciatorie......

So I'd recommend picking out a dish you want, then asking for a Tried and True (TNT) recipe here.
Don't pick the same thing that his mom makes, try something different... You don't want to go head-to-head with an Italian MOM!


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Old 08-02-2010, 10:28 AM   #12
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Dave and Andy-It probably wouldn't have been a bad idea to just admit it and ask her for help, but the problem is, is that I'm not a huge fan of her sauce. I think it needs more flavor so I set out on the journey to find something I prefer.

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Old 08-02-2010, 10:32 AM   #13
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GrillingFool-That sounds delish. And finding something "different" was exactly why I didn't want to ask his mom for her recipe. I want a sauce of my own. And really I'm looking for a sauce I can use for everything from macaroni or stuffed peppers.
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Old 08-02-2010, 10:33 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by ReKop View Post
Dave and Andy-It probably wouldn't have been a bad idea to just admit it and ask her for help, but the problem is, is that I'm not a huge fan of her sauce. I think it needs more flavor so I set out on the journey to find something I prefer.
So you learn hers, learn other meals, other tips and hits, and then over time tweek hers to suit your tastes. Then you WILL have a sauce that is your own.
Quoth the chicken, "Fry some more."
AB - Good Eats: Fry Hard II
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Old 08-02-2010, 10:42 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by ReKop
Now I've led my boyfriend to believe that I have a sauce of my own...but I don't and so I need SERIOUS help.
My Signature Tomato Sauce (meat is optional)
...so don't tell your boyfriend it's yours

1 1/2 lb grnd meat sauteed with garlic/salt & pepper
(use combo1/2 sirloin/1/2 chuck) OR (combo beef/pork)
1 lb fresh mushrooms (baby bella or cremeni for deeper flavor)
2 Tbsp Olive Oil PLUS some for sauteeing meat & mushrooms
3 Cans (16oz each) Hunt's Tomato Sauce...MUST be Hunt's
1 Can (28oz) Hunt's Whole Tomatoes with juice
1 Can (6 oz) Hunt's Tomato Paste
3-4 fresh Garlic Cloves minced
1/4 C fresh Parsley leaves chopped
1 Bay Leaf
1 tsp dried Basil (i use fresh when in season)
1/2 tsp dried Oregano
1 generous tsp sugar - to cut the acidity of the tomatoes
2 Tblsp grated Parmesan cheese (added in last 10 minutes)

Simmer it all for at least two hours. Better the next day.
Serve with extra parmesan on the side (i use a combination
half parmesan and half romano-pecorinni which has awesome
flavor but salty so that's why I combine it with parmesan.

. My kitchen is for dancing. Bring me sunshine in a cup~emily dickinson. Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Old 08-02-2010, 10:49 AM   #16
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I make my own sauce and it can vary a little every time depending on what it is used for. But the basic start is to sauté some onions and garlic in a little olive oil, I then use a can of crushed tomatoes, you can use a can of whole tomatoes or some diced depending on what you have. Just make sure to crush the whole tomatoes up with the back of a spoon or potato masher. Then add tomato sauce as you need for volume. If you want it thicker add more tomatoes or some tomato paste but that gives it a sweeter tasting sauce at least in my opinion. My secret to sauce is that I throw in a pinch of red pepper flakes just to give it a little zing but not make it too hot. And I also pour in some Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce never measuring just a few shakes. Then add oregano, and basil to the sauce and simmer a little.

I know the worchestershire sauce and soy sauce might sound strange. But it is what I learned as a kid from a recipe that my Mom managed to get from a popular restaurant.

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Old 08-02-2010, 02:14 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by forty_caliber View Post
Drain tomatoes, reserving juice in a large bowl. Crush tomatoes with your hands and add to juice.
Yep, .40, this is truly Italian - getting those hands right in there - I use canned crushed tomatoes, but this is very authentic!

Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
.40, you sure cook for large groups. 6-28 ounce cans of tomato makes a lot of sauce!
Most of my "recipes" are either for individual servings (to multiply for each order) or for groups of 50 to 100! That's why I use a computer program to do the calculating for me

Originally Posted by DaveSoMD View Post
Here's a silly question. Wouldn't it have been easier to just admit that you didn't have anyone to teach you to cook and ask BF's Mom if she would teach you? You know the "I didn't have anyone to teach me but I'd be honored if you teach me to cook like you. I just love your recipes."
Yes, I agree, Dave, honesty is the best policy and, ReKop,you may build a better relationship with BF's Mom through it!
"Variety is not just the spice of life, it is the key to life" - Chef Michael Smith

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Old 08-02-2010, 02:29 PM   #18
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I have to agee with Andy and Dave. I got my M-i-l to come haere we went shoping and then when we got home I measured everythinkg she used because when she said a handful of something it would be different because her hand were much bigger than min. I can give you my recipe it is wonderful but to get the flavor you need to NOT sub ingredients. If you are interested let me know I'll be happy to give it to you.
HEAVEN is Cade, Ethan,Carson, and Olivia,Alyssa,Gianna
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Old 08-02-2010, 03:05 PM   #19
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If you are interested let me know I'll be happy to give it to you.
I'm interested!!!!!

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Old 08-02-2010, 04:05 PM   #20
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Tomato sauce is a very personal thing as everyone's preferences are different. I will give you the typical ingredients used in most tomato based pasta sauces.

A sauce Bolognese is a sauce containing meat, and refers to a type of sauce made famous by Bologna, Italy. The meat can be any of a variety of sausages, or can be simple ground beef.

Tomato Sauce Bolognese
*28 oz can Canned diced or crushed tomatoes
*12 oz can tomato sauce
*6 oz can tomato paste
*1 head fresh garlic, or granulated garlic powder
*1 medium onion, sliced or diced (depends on how chunky you want your sauce)
Dried Oregano
Dried Basil
Dried Rosemary
Dried Thyme
Bay Leaf
1 tbs. Brown Sugar
1 1/2 lb. Ground Beef

Other herbs that can be used include fennel, marjoram, and sage. I don't add these to my tomato sauce, but some people do. And as you can see, there are a number of people that simply use onion and garlic, or any combination of the above herbs. It's completely up to you. Oh, and one more thing, you can sweeten you sauce with grated carrot instead of brown sugar if you desire. It's up to you. Sweet Bell pepper is also very good in tomato sauce.

The reason I didn't give amounts for the spices is that I don't measure, but rather, add a bit, let it cook, and then correct the seasoning.

Sweat the onion in extra virgin olive oil over medium heat until lightly softened. Add 4cloves of peeled and crushed garlic and saute' for another minute, taking care not to brown the garlic. Add the tomato products. Add 1 tsp. dried basil, 1/2 tsp. oregano, and 1/4 tsp of the other herbs along with the bay leaf and brown sugar. Reduce heat to a simmer, stir to mix everything and cover. Break up and brown the ground beef, and season with salt to taste. When the ground beef is lightly browned, and fully cooked, remove from heat and drain. Test the sauce for flavor. Smell every herb to get an idea of what it will add to the sauce, and add a little of what you thing the sauce will need.

Important! You can always add more, but once it's in the sauce, it can't be removed.

Add a little of what you think the sauce needs and be aware that after adding an ingredient, you have to let the sauce cook for ten minutes or so before the new addition will release its flavor so that you can taste it. So go slow. That's the secret to a good sauce; you have to let the flavors develop and combine. If you try to rush it, unless you have a written recipe, it will fail. Once you obtain the flavor you like, then develop a recipe from notes you should be taking while developing your recipe.

If possible, make your sauce the day before you intend to serve it. There is a myth that sauce cooked all day is better. For most people, sauce that's cooked all day merely ends up scorched on the bottom. Mkae your sauce taste as good as you can. This should take no more than an hour to 90 minutes. Refrigerate it overnight and the flavors will blend together, while the various flavors are completely released by the herbs and other ingredients in the sauce. When you reheat it the next day, it will be superior by far compared to the first day it was prepared.

Patience is your best friend when making any kind of sauce, be a a tomato sauce, a Bechemel, or an Alfredo. It would behoove you to go online and goolge "Mother Sauces". Though the French Tomato Mother Sauce is different than an Italian tomato sauce, it is close enough, and will give you the technique you need to create whatever kind of sauce you like. And sauces are a very important thing to learn how to do.

The mother sauces will give you an idea how to make a host of sauces, which you can apply to everything from making a sauce to go with stir-fries, or to make a great sweet & sour sauce, or something to serve over turkey and dressing (gravies are very similar to a to of the mother sauces, Veloute, and Espangole.

Hope this helps.

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“No amount of success outside the home can compensate for failure within the home…"

Check out my blog for the friendliest cooking instruction on the net. Go ahead. You know you want to.- http://gwnorthsfamilycookin.wordpress.com/
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