Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Toni Fiore's Sugo di Carne

Elizabeth loves noodles. I mean, who doesn't like pasta, right, but my kid LOVES noodles. Anything made with pasta makes her happy. Tonight, we had friends over who are not vegan, and I wanted to make something they would truly enjoy (and not just tell me they liked to be polite). You can't go wrong with pasta.

This week, Elizabeth and I made our menus from the Delicious TV podcast. It was a fun mommy-daughter activity to sit with a pencil and paper while choosing which dishes we'd make and listing out ingredients for grocery shopping while we watched the videos. One of the dishes Lizzie chose was the sugo di carne (sauce of meat). Tonight, my friend Bunnary and I cooked it together, and it was seriously delicious. With so few ingredients, I thought it would be pretty typical of red sauce and bland. It wasn't. It had a very complex and lovely flavor.

Delicious TV is a winner. For SURE.

Here's the recipe. Even if you already have a vegan meat sauce recipe, I strongly recommend you try this one. As always, I made a few alterations. You can use it my way (typed below) or the original recipe posted by Ms. Fiore in her video podcast under the title "Vegetarian Meat Sauce."

Toni Fiore's Sugo di Carne

1T Olive Oil
1 bag TVP Crumbles
1 onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
Dried Oregano, to taste
Red Pepper Flakes, to taste
1-2T Brown Sugar (not packed, just loose)
1 large can Stewed Tomatoes (Get whatever form of these you like. I used whole, but pureed them beforehand to suite the tastes of my guest. He doesn't like chunks of cooked tomato.)
1 generous handful Fresh Basil Leaves, in a chiffonade
1 generous handful Parsley, chopped (I had to used dried, but fresh would be better)
Salt and Pepper to taste
4-6 servings pasta (use something sturdy like penne or farfalle)

Get your pasta water ready, and time things so your pasta is ready about the time your sauce will be finished.

In a deep, flat-bottom pan, sautee the onion, garlic, and red pepper flakes in the oil over medium high heat until the onions soften and begin to caramelize. Be careful not to over-brown your garlic. Add the oregano, brown sugar, and TVP crumbles. Cook until your mixture looks about like the picture you see below on the right. You should be really smelling the garlic and oregano at this point. Add the tomatoes, and simmer for about 10 minutes. At the very end, lower the heat and add your fresh herbs. Let these sit on a low simmer for about 5 minutes while you get the pasta ready. Right before adding the pasta, be sure to adjust salt and pepper to taste.

When the pasta is done, drain it and add it directly to the sauce. Stir to coat and serve. We ate this with a nice garlic bread (I intended to make a green salad to go alongside, but it totally slipped our minds while we were cooking. It would have been a lovely addition).

1 comment:

  1. One way to keep your garlic from browning too much, or even burning, is to add it closer to the end. You should still get the same flavoring and yumminess without having to worry about nasty burned garlic. Since I'm a repeat offender of burned garlic, I've started doing this and it really has made a difference. Who knew garlic could be soft and yummy instead of brown and crunchy?!?! :)