The Dog Doesn’t Die

Book reviews & random thoughts

My Pasta Sauce Recipe

I think I said something in my first post here about including recipes. My pasta sauce recipe is truly mine, although I can trace the ideas behind some ingredients. Anyway, I made this at my parents’ home over the holidays, and it was a big hit. Check the first comment for the recipe itself. It’s annotated, too.


January 1, 2008 - Posted by | recipes | , ,

1 Comment »

  1. Ingredients
    1 pound Italian sausage *1
    olive oil
    1 large yellow onion, chopped small
    1/8 teaspoon cinnamon *2
    1 clove garlic, minced
    28-32 ounces jarred spaghetti sauce *3
    1 pinch cumin seed
    1 tablespoon dried oregano
    salt and pepper to taste *4
    1/4-1/2 cup sweet red wine *5

    Coat the bottom of a large skillet with olive oil and place over medium heat. Remove the casings from the Italian sausage, pinch into bite-sized pieces, and add to skillet. Cook until almost brown. Add onion and cinnamon; cook until onion is almost translucent. Add garlic and cook for another minute or two. If you have room in your large skillet, you can now add the pasta sauce, or you can drain the meat and onion mixture, transfer it to a large pot, and add the pasta sauce. Add the spices and sweet red wine. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer. Place a lid over the sauce while it continues to simmer, stirring occasionally. Put water on to boil for the rigatoni. By time the rigatoni is ready, the pasta sauce will be cooked through. Serve with Parmesan cheese. The leftover sauce freezes well.

    *1 — If you’re a vegetarian, you can probably use tofu, eggplant, or mushrooms instead. I use hot Italian sausage, but some people prefer “sweet” Italian sausage. And the idea for Italian sausage came from a restaurant meal.
    *2 — At another restaurant, the owner revealed the secret ingredient to his superb onion soup: cinnamon. He said it makes the onion soup more vivid, and he was right.
    *3 — The amount depends on how thick you want your sauce. In the March 2006 edition of Real Simple magazine, there was a recommendation for jarred pasta sauces: Barilla Marinara at the cheap end, Victoria Marinara in the middle, and Mom’s Spaghetti Sauce for those willing to pay over $6. They’re all good. Also, I recently read that not quite 20% of Americans hate tomatoes, based on texture alone. I am in this sizeable minority, so I dump my jarred sauces into the blender first in order to liquify those nasty (to me) tomato chunks.
    *4 — Freshly ground black pepper has a stronger taste.
    *5 — Like the cinnamon with the onions, this makes the sauce taste brighter. In a pinch, you can use marsala or sherry. Whatever you use, make sure it’s sweet.

    Comment by esheley | January 1, 2008 | Reply

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