Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Tomato Sauce #3

This is our third and maybe final tomato sauce.  We like to use this one for Spaghetti and other pasta dishes, and Eggplant Parmesan.  Our home grown Roma tomatoes aren’t quite ready yet, so we’re substituting canned tomatoes here.  Wah!.  But if you have your own tomatoes, good for you!  This makes a nice vegetarian option for dinner.  And this sauce makes the whole house smell so good!

3 tbl. olive oil
1 fennel bulb, diced (reserve the fronds)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
2 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped
½ red bell pepper, chopped (about ½ cup)
½ green bell pepper, chopped (about ½ cup)
10 Baby Bella mushrooms (or Button), peeled and sliced
1 tbl. fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp. fresh oregano, chopped
1 tsp. fresh marjoram, chopped
1 tbl. fresh basil, chopped
2 Bay leaves
28 oz. can of diced tomatoes
14 oz. can tomato puree
3 tbl. tomato paste
¼ cup of dry red wine
1 cup chicken broth
2 fresh yellow squash or Zucchini, coarsely diced (about 1 ½ cups)
2 good dashes of ground white pepper
3 dashes of Sea Salt
1 large spring of fresh Rosemary (leave it whole, because we’ll remove it from the sauce later)

·         In a Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat until sizzling
·         To the olive oil, add the fennel bulb, onion, celery, garlic, red & green bell peppers
·         Continue to cook and stir often over medium heat for about 4 minutes
·         Add the mushrooms and continue cooking and stirring another 2 minutes
·         Add the herbs (except for the Rosemary), and reduce heat to medium-low
·         Add both cans of tomatoes and the tomato paste, and the red wine and chicken broth
·         Add the yellow squash (or Zucchini), white pepper, and sea salt
·         Cover and bring to a slow simmer over medium-low, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally
·         Put the fennel fronds and the Rosemary in the sauce, leaves down leaving the stems sticking out (occasionally grab the stems and stir the rosemary & fennel around in the sauce to get the essence out)
·         Cook about another 10 minutes and remove the fennel fronds and Rosemary and discard
·         Continue cooking for about 30 minutes, then crack the lid to let some of the moisture evaporate
·         Cook another 30 minutes with the lid cracked, stirring occasionally
·         remove from heat and uncover until ready to use

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