Thursday Lunch

Have you ever made a sauce and saved a portion to use the next day? Having a basic tomato basil mushroom sauce on-hand, whether in the fridge or freezer, can make for a very fast meal prep. Try using it on poultry, meat and fish prior to baking.  It’s a great way to change the look on your dinner plate. For those loving to eat their morning eggs adding hot sauce, switching to a tomato sauce gives that condiment bottle a break. By cooking a double batch and keeping it properly stored, means you can dice veggies to incorporate and use different pastas, too. A meat loaf adorned with this sauce is delicious (add in a cup of Quaker Oats to the meat) right before baking the dish, it gives it more body and adds to the overall flavor. Pork chops baked with provolone cheese and sauce is another way to enjoy its versatility . So try making a double or triple pot and keep some ready-to-use. This method will surely save you time in the kitchen.

Tomato Basil Mushroom Sauce

2 lg cans tomato sauce

2 med cans tomato paste

3 cans spicy tomatoes & peppers

1/2 cup cold water

3 bay leaves

2 tbsp oregano

1-2 tsp sea salt (to taste)

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1-2 tsp freshly ground pepper

2 medium carrots (minced)

1 green pepper (diced)

1/4 cup deep red wine

1 Tbsp raw sugar

2-4 Tbsp garlic powder

1/2 stick unsalted butter + 3 Tbsp EVOO  (**)

3 whole yellow onions (sliced )

16 oz white mushrooms (cleaned and sliced)

1 cup fresh basil (remove long stalks) **

~~~~~~~~~~

1) Use a large pot or crock-pot and add in all of the ingredients with the exception of the onions and mushrooms and ** fresh basil

2) Stir to blend and turn stove to high heat

3) Large saute pan add butter and olive oil

4) Saute onions half-way and add in the mushrooms

5) When vegetables are cooked pour into bowl and set aside

5) Stir the sauce and bring to a boil

6) Reduce heat to medium and stir until it is boiling softly

7) Reduce heat to allow sauce to simmer for an hour or so

8) Using a clean spoon remove some sauce and add in a little veggies for a taste test

9) Add some salt pepper garlic and add in sauteed vegetables

10) Place the fresh basil on top and gently stir it in

11) Turn off the stove

12) Cook your pasta according to directions

13) Serve immediately and enjoy

Remember to divide up the remaining sauce to keep in your freezer and refrigerator. 

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