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Tag Archives | Pasta Sauce

Marinara Sauce

Full bodied Marinara Sauce that stands alone or can be used in other pasta dishes.

The Sauce: Marinara Sauce – Rich, full flavored, home simmered for a couple hours until the flavors meld into irresistible pasta sauce.

‘Great Sauces Transform Good Food into Gourmet’ 

Dynamite marinara

My friend Debbie got me hooked on San Marzano tomatoes. I’m a relatively new convert to pancetta. These two are a dynamite combination for this simple, mere five ingredient marinara sauce. I’ve always believed marinara shouldn’t need more seasoning or other ingredients. When this sauce has slow simmered to the final Marinara Saucestages of tasting and seasoning, I’m tempted, well OK, I just give in and savor a small bowl of sauce dipped from the pot.

Of course that doesn’t mean that you can’t use it as a base for more complex pasta sauces like meatball sauce or lasagna. If you do you’ll have an Italian table right in your own home. Use it solo or try Tomato Cream Sauce and Spicy Tomato Sauce. If you make Spaghetti and Meatballs or Lasagna, oh baby!

You might also enjoy Bramwell Spaghetti Sauce, Italian Spaghetti Ragu, Amatriciana, Spaghetti Carbonara and Braided Italian Bread.

1 of 3 part series ”Marinara and Friends”. Part 2 Lasagna and Part 3 Spaghetti and Meatballs. More on Marinara.

2013 AniversaRecipe – Shamrock Corned Beef Brisket
2012 AniversaRecipe – Cranberry Orange Scones
2011 AniversaRecipe – Southern Pecan Pie

Recipe: Marinara Sauce

Active Time: 20 Minutes | Total Time: 2 Hours 20 Minutes | Yield: 12 Cups

Tomatoes1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 lb pancetta, 2 1/4-inch slices, diced
3 medium onions, 1/4-inch diced
1 Tbsp kosher salt
5 cloves garlic, grated
4 28-oz cans whole peeled tomatoes
2 cups water

Special Equipment – large pot

Marinara Sauce
Pancetta1 Place olive oil in a large pot and heat on medium-high. Add pancetta and cook until the fat renders, about 4-5 minutes.

2 Add diced onions, kosher salt and cook until onions are soft and barely starting to take on a light golden color, about 6-7 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute.

3 Crush the tomatoes with your hands into small rustic pieces over the pot discarding the fibrous stem ends. Add sauce plus 2 cups of water. Bring to boil then reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours stirring occasionally.

Pancetta is sold at supermarket deli meat counters. Ask for two or three 1/4-inch slices. Otherwise find a package of pre-sliced pancetta. Usually it’s thinly sliced but you can chop in small pieces.

Rinse out the cans by placing the 2 cups water in one of the cans and swirl, dump it into each subsequent can swirling around to wash out the remaining tomato juice, then pour it into the pot.

When I make a double batch, sometimes I pulse the tomatoes once or twice in the blender rather than hand crush.

Try San Marzano tomatoes for this marinara.

If you’d like to simmer the sauce for 3 hours add 3 cups of water.

Use marinara sauce fresh or freeze in air tight containers or freezer zip bags.

Make a double the batch in a double large roaster or p0t.

To make Tomato Cream Sauce – Add 1/3 cup heavy cream to 4 cups of marinara sauce. Serve over pasta and garnish with chopped parsley. Also serve as Tomato Bisque.

Spicy Tomato Sauce – Add 1/3 cup jalapeño pickling juice to 4 cups of marinara sauce. Serve over pasta and garnish with pickled jalapeño slices. This also makes a spicy Tomato Soup served in small bowls.

Use as red sauce when layering lasagna.

Add browned meatballs into this marinara and simmer for 10 minutes then serve over spaghetti.

Dish Designer

  • Exchange pancetta for bacon.
  • For Tomato Cream Sauce, increase or decrease amount of heavy cream depending on richness desired or use half and half.
  • For Tomato Jalapeño Sauce, increase or decrease amount of pickling juice depending on spiciness desired. Make your own Jalapeño Peppers with sauce.

Inspiration – Ann Burrell’s Marinara Sauce (with my instructions and adaptations)
Cook with Sauces
Marinara Sauce
Written by
Photographs by Helen Horton
Updated: April 16, 2014

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Tuscan Tomato Trottole

Tuscan Tomato Trottole is a smooth, creamy tomato oregano pasta sauce that’s slow roasted in the oven.

The Sauce: Tuscan Tomato Sauce – Slow roasted tomato oregano sauce pureed smooth. It’s finished with heavy cream and Parmigianna-Regianno for a company quality dish.

‘Great Sauces Transform Good Food into Gourmet’ 

Sunday sauce

All my slow simmered pasta sauces concentrate and reduce on my stove top. I recently learned about slow roasting tomato sauces in the oven. This is definitely a Sunday sauce that needs time to coax and intensify ingredients. But what I love about it is I can read the Sunday funnies, relax with pomegranate tea or get lost in a good book without stirring for the duration.

Tuscan Tomato TrottoleOnce the aromatics become transparent you add tomatoes, juices and seasonings. Stir through, cover and tuck it in the oven to roast. You could attend church, go for a walk or phone a friend or two. You choose because you won’t be tied to stirring the pot.

On the final lap you finish the sauce while the pasta cooks al dente. Serve over trottole, a spiral pasta that reminds me of my curly head daughter, or any kind of short pasta you have in your pantry. Garnish with a few oregano leaves and oh, it’s elegant but down-home, a creamy, smooth pasta sauce over trottole.

You might also enjoy Bramwell Spaghetti Sauce, Italian Spaghetti Ragu, Florentine Lasagna, Antipasti, Braided Italian Bread, Italian Bread Dipping Oil, Chicken Alfredo Campanelle, Creamy Italian Feta Dip, Mediterranean Quinoa Salad, Quinoa Under Stained Glass, Andrew’s Pizza, Roasted Tomato Bisque, Spaghetti alla Carbonara, Gnocchi with White Beans and Spinach, White Pizza with Arugula, Polentina and Parmesan Zucchini Crisps.

2012 AniversaRecipe – Pot Roast with Caper Sauce
2011 AniversaRecipe – Pork Chops with Mango Salsa

Recipe: Tuscan Tomato Trottole

Prep Time: 15 Minutes | Inactive Time: 2 Hours | Cook Time: 45 Minutes | Yield: 7 Cups | Level: Moderate

Fresh Oregano1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
3/4 cup apple juice
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 28-oz cans peeled whole tomatoes
2 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper
16 oz trottole pasta
1 1/2 Tbsp minced fresh oregano, plus extra leaves for garnish
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup grated Parmigianna-Reggiano, plus extra for serving

Special Equipment – oven proof pot with tight fitting lid such as a dutch oven

1 Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Crushed Red Pepper and Dried Oregano2 Heat olive oil in a large oven proof pot over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic and cook until translucent, about 5-8 minutes.

3 Add crushed red pepper and 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano. Cook for 1 minute.

4 Add the apple and lemon juices. Continue cooking until liquid reduces by half, about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat.

Tomato Oregano Sauce5 Add tomatoes, juice and all. Crush each tomato with your hands. Stir in salt and a few grinds of pepper. Cover with a tight fitting lid and place it in the oven for 2 hours. Remove the pan from the oven and allow to stand for 15 minutes without the lid.

6 Meanwhile bring a large pot of well salted water to boil and cook the trottole pasta until al dente. Drain and set aside.

Mix in the Cream7 Working in two batches, place the roasted tomato mixture in a blender and puree until the sauce is smooth. Return to the pan and set over medium heat.

8 Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of fresh oregano. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add heavy cream and cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Pasta added to sauce9 Serve over trottole pasta with additional Parmigianna-Reggiano and fresh oregano leaves.

Peeled tomatoes puree very smooth but diced or crushed tomatoes also work well.

Add more or less cream depending on your preference for richness.

Try penne, wagon wheels, rigatoni, or campenelle pasta.

Make a double batch without the cream and cheese, then freeze in pouches. Heat and add the cream and Parmigianna-Reggiano and serve with pasta.

This sauce is delicious served without cream for a weeknight supper.

Serve this dish without pasta and it becomes Tuscan Tomato Oregano Bisque. Garnish with a swirl of cream and some oregano leaves.

Dish Designer

  • Exchange heavy cream for half & half.

Inspiration – Joseph Realmuto
Cook with Sauces
Tuscan Tomato Trottole
Written by
Photographs and Styling by Helen Horton
Updated: October 17, 2013

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Bramwell Spaghetti Sauce

Thick, chunky ragu-style spaghetti sauce loaded with sliced mushrooms.

The Sauce: Spaghetti Ragu – Rich, chunky meat and tomato sauce with sliced mushrooms, onions, herbs and a splash of apple juice and cider vinegar.

‘Great Sauces Transform Good Food into Gourmet’ 

Wooing Italian style

Good food brings people together. Lincoln is a food aficionado. He loves to eat good food and tailors his rigorous exercise program to encompass the dishes he loves. So it’s no surprise that when I asked Lincoln and Christi how they met, the story included New Mexico and this fabulous Italian pasta sauce.

While dating Christi, Lincoln made this thick and chunky spaghetti sauce loaded with sliced mushrooms on more than one occasion and basically wowed her. That turned into wooing and now they share their love of good food on their life journey together. A terrific cook in her own right, Christi cooks ‘made from scratch’ dishes for him

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on a regular basis. I can vouch because I’ve dined at their table and exchanged recipe cards with them, the kind that have a splash of tomato sauce Bramwell Spaghetti Sauceon one corner and a thumb print of olive oil on the other.

Is there someone in your life you want to draw closer? This spaghetti sauce could be just the ticket. At a minimum, it’s a meaty, savory dish that’ll bring together family and friends.

You might also enjoy Italian Spaghetti Ragu, Spaghetti alla Carbonara, Florentine Lasagna Rolls, Amatriciana, Gnocchi with White Beans and Spinach and Herb Garlic Bread.

2012 AniversaRecipe – Apple Julep
2011 AniversaRecipe – Corn Muffins

Recipe: Bramwell Spaghetti Sauce

Prep Time: 10 Minutes | Cook Time: 80+ Minutes | Yield: 6-7 Cups | Level: Easy

sliced mushrooms

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, micro grated
  • 8 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup apple juice
  • 1/2 tsp cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp sugaradd tomatoes
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp crushed dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 6 oz can tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp dried parsley flakes

Special Equipment – large pot

1 Brown the ground beef in a large pot. Drain fat.

2 Add oil, onion, garlic, mushrooms and sauté until onions are translucent and mushrooms softened.

3 Add tomatoes, stirring to loosen the brown bits on the pan. Add apple juice, vinegar, sugar, salt, basil, oregano and combine. Bring to a boil then reduce and simmer for 1 hour stirring occasionally. The ingredients meld together for a very tasty pasta sauce.
after 1 hour
If time permits, simmer for 2 hours. The ingredients break down and begin to concentrate.
after two hours
If possible, simmer for 3 hours. The sauce becomes a luxurious, rich sauce you would find in a restaurant in Italy.simmered 3 hours

4 Fifteen minutes before serving, add the tomato paste and parsley. Adjust for salt. Serve over spaghetti or other pasta of choice.

Grate fresh parmigiana-reggiano over the sauce.

Double or triple this sauce. It only takes a couple extra minutes to dice extra onions and slice more mushrooms. Maximize the output of the simmering time yielding enough for a crowd or freezing for later.

Penne, shells, twists or other tube pasta pair well with chunky pasta sauces such as this one.

Serve this pasta dish with a fresh green salad and Italian dressing and Herb Garlic Bread.

Dish Designer

  • Exchange fresh garlic for 1/8 tsp garlic powder.
  • Use button or crimini mushrooms.

Inspiration – Saucy Cuisine Kitchen
Cook with Sauces
Written by
Photographs by Helen Horton
Updated: March 23, 2013

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Chicken with Tomatoes and Peppers

Red pasta sauce with chicken on fettuccine

Chicken over pasta

Try this chicken dish simmered in a tomato-ey Italian sauce. The thighs soak up the seasonings and are capped with melty cheese. It’s the yellow peppers that make the sauce special by adding sweetness. Chicken bouillon intensifies and deepens the taste of the tomato sauce. Here’s one dish meal you can serve with some crispy garlic bread and be done.  If you are a ‘red sauce’ lover, try Italian Spaghetti and Amatriciano.

2011 AniversaRecipe—Quick Quiche

Recipe: Chicken with Tomatoes and Peppers

Prep Time: 10 Minutes | Cook Time: 40 Minutes | Yield: 4 Servings | Level: Easy

Chicken with Tomatoes and PeppersIngredients
The Sauce
3 Tbsp Olive Oil, divided
1/2 medium Yellow Pepper, diced
1 medium Onion, diced
3 cloves Garlic, minced
1 29-oz can diced Tomatoes
1 tsp dried crushed Oregano
1 tsp Chicken Bouillon Paste or Cube ;)
Salt and Pepper

The Rest
4 boneless Chicken Thighs
1/4 cup grated Monterrey Jack Cheese
2 Tbsp grated Parmesan Cheese
1 lb Fettuccini, cooked

Chicken with Tomatoes and PeppersInstructions
1 Place 2 tablespoons of oil in a skillet on medium high heat. Add yellow pepper, onion, garlic and sauté until it becomes slightly browned, about 4-6 minutes. Remove to a plate and set aside.

2 Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil to the skillet. Lightly salt and pepper both sides of the chicken then place in the pan and brown both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Remove and set aside.

3 Add the tomatoes, oregano and chicken bouillon to the skillet. Add salt and pepper to taste and bring to a boil. Then reduce heat and simmer for 5-7 minutes.

4 Add back the sautéed vegetables and mix in. Place the chicken pieces into the sauce and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.

5 Sprinkle the one fourth of the jack cheese and Parmesan on the top of each chicken thigh. Put a lid on the skillet and continue cooking until the cheese melts, about 2-3 minutes.

6 Serve over fettuccini.

;) Chicken Bouillon Paste—Use Better Than Bouillon chicken paste. It comes in a jar and is easier to combine into a dish than bouillon cubes.

Dish Designer
• Exchange yellow pepper for green, orange or red pepper.
• Exchange chicken thighs for breasts.
• Exchange fettuccini for other long pasta such as spaghetti, vermicelli or linguine.

Chicken with Tomatoes and Peppers
Inspiration—Saucy Cuisine Kitchen
sauces over under and through

Written by Helen Horton
Photographs by Helen Horton

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