Ragù finto tomato meat sauce
Italian tomato sauces
I will be sharing many tomato sauce recipes with you in the future, but I will start out with some of the basic ones first. Ragù finto is a deep-flavored tomato-based sauce that is perfect for certain dishes like cannelloni. The secret is to let it simmer for at least 2 hours.
The ingredients (serves 6 when used on cannelloni):
- 1 pound pork loin or mild Italian sausage
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 6-oz tomato paste.
- 1 cup (or more) red wine (e.g., a cabernet or chianti)
- 2 ½ cups hot water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
Mixing and cooking
Place the oil in a pan and heat on medium. Add the meat and brown slowly so that the meat particles do not burn in the oil (about 30 mins). If you are using Italian sausage, take the skins off and break it up as it cooks. Once it browns, remove the meat for later without turning off the flame (if you cooked sausage, use a slotted spoon to remove).
Pork loin with oil
Browning the pork
The tomato paste and wine
Add the tomato paste (make sure it is paste and not sauce) to the pan and gradually add the wine as you mix. Be careful to make sure it does not burn. After a few minutes the sauce will begin to become creamy and take on a brownish red appearance. Add the hot water and salt and mix well. Add the sugar if you prefer a slightly sweeter sauce. Place the meat back in the pan and simmer for 2 hours. Stir it periodically to keep the sauce from burning. You can increase the thickness of the sauce by adding less water (as little as 1 ½ cups). Remember if you are using the sauce for baking, make it less thick so it will not dry out in the oven. Once the sauce has simmered for 2 hours place the pork in a food processor and shred. Mix it back into the sauce and simmer a few more minutes. You do not need to use the food processor if you cooked with sausage.
The tomato paste in the olive oil
Meat in sauce
I get a lot of volunteers with my pltnas as well. This year I must have had 20 or so volunteer tomato pltnas. I knew they were either romas or chocolate cherry tomatoes but didn\\\'t know which might be which. I transplanted them into some small containers than I brought them to my office at work and put them with a note telling people they could take a couple home. Before the end of the day, they were all taken home. Makes me feel good to share that way. ~Amanda