Saturday, July 24, 2010

First cooking in Minnesota

I cheated a little for this meal. Jake and I "borrowed" his parents' kitchen last weekend while we were waiting for our things to be delivered. Rainbow had a special on the "grill pack" of Italian sausages, so I had planned to make meat sauce.

While the meat sauce was simmering, I also decided to try my hand at foccacia bread. I didn't have an exact recipe to go off, but it turned out pretty well.

We didn't end up eating the sauce for a few days, so the flavors had extra time to soak together.

Italian sausage meat sauce (makes 2 batches)
2 28 oz cans diced tomatoes
8-12 Italian sausages, cut into 1 inch and 1/2 inch pieces
1 onion, diced
6 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced or minced
1 can tomato sauce
1/4 c olive oil
1/3 c red wine
2 pinches of sugar
1/2 tsp-1 tsp red chili flakes
salt and pepper, to taste
6-10 leaves fresh basil (chiffonade)

In a large skilled with high walls, brown sausage pieces with the olive oil. If you like a mix of spicy and sweet, toss half the pieces with 1 tsp red chili flakes and half with 2 tsp brown sugar before browning.

When sausages have browned, add onion and saute for 3 minutes. Stir in garlic and wine, and mix with browned bits in the pan. Saute another 2 minutes until wine reduces by half.

Add the red chili flakes, sugar and salt and pepper, then 2 cans of tomatoes. Increase heat and cook the tomatoes down, 5-10 minutes.

Stir in the tomato sauce, until thoroughly combined. Lower heat to a simmer, then cover for at least 30 minutes, up to 4 hours. (you can also transfer to a crock pot at this stage)

Sprinkle in the basil or parsley in the last 5 minutes of cooking.

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