Greg’s famous spaghetti sauce. Recipe makes 12-16 servings and freezes well.
1/2 c olive oil
2 teaspoons basil
2 teaspoons oregano
2 bay leaves
1 bulb garlic
1 large onion
1 green pepper
12 oz mushrooms
8 oz kalamata pitted olives
1/2 c red wine
1 small can tomato paste
3 28 oz cans diced tomatoes
Parmesan or Romano rind
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium low heat. Add onion and cook until softened. Add garlic, basil and oregano and cook for a few minutes more. Add peppers and cook, stirring often for another 5 minutes or so. Than so the same with the mushrooms, followed by the olives. Add the wine and let it cook down a bit, then stir in the tomato paste and blend well, stirring constantly. Add the diced tomatoes and raise the heat until the sauce starts to bubble. Toss in the Parmesan rind then lower heat and simmer, stirring occasionally for three hours. Remove any rind that has not dissolved before serving.
2016: the year of the crock-pot! In Italian cuisine, ragù is a meat-based sauce commonly served with pasta.
1 small onion, thinly sliced
6 cloves garlic, pressed
2 (28 ounce) cans whole peeled tomatoes
3 T tomato paste
1/2 c red wine
2 t basil
2 t oregano
2 bay leaves
1 t salt
pepper to taste
1 pound ground Italian sausage (hot not sweet)
1 bunch kale, roughly chopped
1 can white beans
1 pound gnocchi
2 T olive oil
Put the tomatoes into the crock-pot and either cut them up or crush them by hand. Add the onion, garlic, tomato paste, wine and spices and mix together.
Roll sausage very small bite size balls (wedding soup size), add them to the crock pot and gently mix them in. Cover the crock-pot and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
Half an hour before serving, stir in the kale and white beans, turn heat to high, and cover.
Meanwhile, cook the gnocchi according to package directions and then toss with 2 tablespoons good olive oil and fresh grated Parmesan.
Serve gnocchi topped with ragù and garnished Parmesan and fresh basil if you have it.
Adapted from a recipe at Half Baked Harvest
Original recipe at Half Baked Harvest – Crockpot Tuscan Sausage & White Bean Ragu with Buttered Gnocchi
“Malfatti” translates to “poorly made” – these dumplings are rustic but delicious, and a long time favorite family recipe. Be careful in varying from the recipe or risk having your dumplings dissolve in their cooking water!
1 10 oz package frozen chopped spinach (thawed)
1 c ricotta
1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese
1 c. fine dry bread crumbs (no substitutions!)
1/4 c scallions minced
3 T fresh basil or 2 ½ t dried
1 clove garlic, minced
¼ t nutmeg
½ c flour
pasta of your choice
prepared tomato sauce
Place the 1/2 cup of flour in a wide shallow bowl and set aside.
Press the thawed spinach in a colander to remove as much water as possible. Place in a large bowl and add cheeses, bread crumbs, scallions, eggs, garlic, basic and nutmeg. Mix well using your hands is messy but efficient. Divide into 16 equal portions and form each into 3″ log shapes. Roll each log in the flour and place on a small baking sheet and put it into the freezer for at least an hour.
When ready to eat, put on a pot of salted water and bring to a boil. Gently add malfatti and simmer for 3 minutes after they rise to the top. Serve hot over pasta with your favorite tomato sauce. Garnish with fresh grated Parmesan cheese.
A traditional Christmas dish in the Umbria region of Italy.
1/4 c extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 c finely chopped walnuts
1/4 c chopped parsley
1/2 t salt
fresh ground pepper
Italian bread cut into cubes (optional)
1 lb penne, rotini or fusilli
Saute garlic in olive oil over medium low heat. Mix in the rest of the ingredients, heat through and toss with pasta and bread cubes.