While visiting friends several weeks ago, they served this spaghetti sauce over homemade pasta. It was delicious. They had already made a batch of this sauce and froze it in containers for future meals so it was simple meal to put together as the homemade pasta was also made in advance and had been frozen.
With the tomatoes ripening from the garden, I had over 20 tomatoes that needed to be processed, frozen or cooked with. I decided to make this spaghetti sauce and got the recipe from my friends. She had gotten this recipe from a friend of hers many years ago. The recipe comes from this site. I have provided the original recipe and directions in this post.
I made some changes as I wanted to use fresh tomatoes, I didn't want to use tomato sauce and I decided to add a small can of tomato paste. I skinned and cored about 20 to 25 tomatoes, then coarsely chopped them and added them to the crockpot. For the ground beef I used lean ground beef and for the sausage I used one mild italian sausage and one hot italian sausage. These sausages are made in one of the grocery stores that I frequent. I also added two stalks of chopped celery to the crockpot. I didn't add any bay leaves to the recipe and used frozen basil leaves.
Instead of cooking this sauce during the day, I decided to cook it overnight and put all of the ingredients together in the evening and just let it simmer away overnight. I woke up to the smell of spaghetti sauce. It had been simmering for ten hours. It needed a few good stirs. There was some sauce stuck to the bottom of the pot which I worked at to loosen it up. The downside of cooking this overnight is that you can't open the crockpot lid and stir it every hour or two. Since the sauce was more liquidity than I liked, I added two more tablespoons of minute tapioca. I turned the cooking heat off of the crockpot and let it sit for two hours. After some taste testing and asking the DH for his sampling opinion, I added a little bit of splenda and agave. It needed something to counter balance the acidity from the tomatoes. I didn't seed the tomatoes that I added and seeds when cooked over a period of time can add a bitter taste. All in all the spaghetti sauce tastes great and I will make this again. Since it is a large batch, I will freeze it in batches for future meals. If you want to make this into a vegan or vegetarian sauce you can easily substitute the beef and sausage for a soy based product.
|All ingredients added and ready to be simmered for 10 to 12 hours.|
1 lb ground beef
1/2 lb Italian sausage
1 onion; chopped
2 garlic clove; minced
2 cans of tomatoes; 16 oz each, chopped
2 cans tomato sauce; 8 oz each
2 cans mushrooms; drained and chopped
1 green or coloured pepper; chopped
4 tbsp quick cooking tapioca
2 bay leaves
1 tsp dry basil, or use fresh - 6 to 8 leaves
1 tsp dried oregano
salt and pepper to taste
In a frying pan on medium high, add the ground beef, sausage, onion, and garlic until meat is brown and onion is tender; drain off fat. I added a little bit of oil and cooked the onion and garlic first for a few minutes.
While the meat is cooking, into a medium to large size crockpot, combine undrained tomatoes, tomato sauce, mushrooms, green pepper, tapioca, bay leaves, oregano, basil, pepper, and salt. Stir in the browned meat mixture. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 10-12 hours or high heat setting for 5-6 hours. Remove bay leaves. Makes 8-10 servings.