5 recipes tomato sauce from spain part 2

VERY MUSHROOMY PORCINI TOMATO SAUCE


The term umami describes the so-called fifth flavor, a deep meatiness that
we all crave whether we eat meat or not (sweet, sour, salty, and bitter are
the other four flavors), and I’ve developed this sauce to highlight that
character. Tomato are naturally rich in umami (due to the presence of
glutamic acid), dried porcini are like little engines of umami, and
Worcestershire sauce is like liquid umami. In other words, this sauce is
savory.
MAKES ABOUT 7 CUPS/1.6 L

Ingredients

  • 11/2 cups/360 ml red wine (nothing too oaky or tannic) 1 oz/30 g
  • dried porcini mushrooms, rinsed if dusty
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 lb/455 g white or cremini mushrooms, trimmed and finely chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • About 12 turns freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 cups/1.4 L Good and Versatile Marinara Sauce
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice, plus more if needed
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce, plus more if needed (omit to make this vegetarian)
  • Hot-pepper sauce such as Sriracha
  • Pinch of granulated sugar, if needed

Directions

  1. In a small saucepan, combine the wine and porcini and bring to a simmer
    over mediumhigh heat.
  2. Remove from the heat and let sit until the mushrooms are soft, at least 30 minutes.
  3. Scoop out the mushrooms, squeeze out as much wine as you can, chop the mushrooms fine, and set aside.
  4. Return the wine to mediumhigh heat and simmer until reduced to 2 to 3
    tbsp, 10 to 15 minutes. Set aside.
  5. In a large, heavy saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the oil and butter over
    mediumhigh heat. When the butter melts, add the fresh mushrooms, 1/2 tsp
    salt, and the pepper and cook, stirring often, until the mushroom liquid has
    been released and has evaporated and the mushrooms are fragrant and
    starting to brown, 12 to 15 minutes.
  6. Add the marinara sauce, the reserved porcini, the reduced wine, the thyme,
    lemon juice, and Worcestershire sauce and stir well. Adjust the heat to
    maintain a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is slightly
    reduced and the flavor is deep and savory, 25 to 35 minutes.
  7. Season withhot-pepper sauce, then taste and adjust the flavor balance, if needed, with
    sugar and with more salt, lemon juice, and Worcestershire sauce.

STORAGE

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 1 week or
freeze in one or more ziplock freezer bags for up to 3 months.

QUICK CHANGE

Use fresh chanterelle, oyster, maitake, or shiitake
mushrooms instead of the cremini; if using shiitakes, reduce the
amount to 8 oz/225 g, as they have a strong flavor.


VERY MEATY TOMATO SAUCE


I envy Italian families who spend Sundays around the table eating pasta
dressed with long-simmered meaty ragu. It’s not the family part I envy—I
like my own (though we’d more likely have been eating ham sandwiches on
white bread … ), but I long for the deep savoriness of hunks of meat
simmered in tomato sauce. In this recipe, I think I get to that same savory
place, but in less time and with no Italian heritage required. The key is three
types of meat: pancetta for salty-fattiness, Italian sausage for more pork and
fennel notes, and ground beef for sweetness and texture. A final dose of
Worcestershire pulls it together.
MAKES ABOUT 8 CUPS/2 L

Ingredients

  • 4 oz/115 g sliced pancetta, cut into 1-in/2.5-cm pieces
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 oz/225 g sweet Italian sausage, casings removed if using link sausage
  • 8 oz/225 g ground beef
  • 6 cups/1.4 L Good and Versatile Marinara Sauce
  • 13/4 cups/420 ml homemade turkey broth, chicken broth, or canned
  • reduced-sodium chicken broth 1 fresh rosemary sprig, 4 in/10 cm long
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce, plus more if needed
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar, plus more if needed
  • Hot-pepper sauce such as Sriracha
  • Kosher salt

Directions

  1. Freeze the pancetta until mostly solid, then pulse in a food processor until
    ground.
  2. In a large, wide, heavy saucepan or a Dutch oven, heat the oil over
    mediumhigh heat.
  3. Add the ground pancetta and cook, stirring occasionally,until the fat is rendered and the pancetta is golden but not browned, 4 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add the sausage and beef and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon or spatula, until the pink is gone (don’t let the meat brown or get crusty), 3 to 4 minutes. If there is a lot of fat, pour some off, but leave a nice amount (2 to 3 tbsp), which will make the sauce more flavorful.
  5. Stir in the marinara sauce, broth, rosemary, bay leaf, and Worcestershire
    sauce. Cover, reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, and cook, stirring and
    scraping the pan fairly frequently, for about 45 minutes.
  6. Uncover and continue to simmer until the sauce is slightly reduced, very
    concentrated, and glistening with oil, another few minutes. Stir in the sugar
    and a few drops of hot-pepper sauce. Taste and adjust the flavor balance, if
    needed, with salt, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and hot-pepper sauce.

STORAGE

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 1 week or
freeze in one or more ziplock freezer bags for up to 3 months.

QUICK CHANGE

Add a few red pepper flakes with the sausage and beef.
Add 2 tbsp each chopped fresh basil and flat-leaf parsley when you
add the marinara sauce.
Omit the pancetta, use ground turkey and turkey sausage instead of
ground beef and Italian sausage, and increase the olive oil to 3 tbsp.

CHICKEN AND PEPPERS BRAISED IN VERY
MUSHROOMY PORCINI TOMATO SAUCE


This easy and savory stew was inspired by chicken cacciatore, that is,
“hunter’s style” stew. The idea is that a hunter bags a bird, then forages
some lovely mushrooms in the forest on the way home. I’m not sure where
the peppers come from, perhaps a neighbor’s garden? In any case, the
flavors are deep and bold and satisfying, particularly during the colder
months.
You can use any cut of chicken you like. I’m a true believer in the skin-on,
bone-in chicken thigh. I think it’s the only part of modern chickens that has
any flavor, and the texture stays moist no matter how long you cook it. I
also like the bites of chicken close to the bone, which are particularly tender
and flavorful. But if you prefer boneless and skinless, that’s fine too. The
stew is especially delicious with good-quality egg noodles or homemade
spaetzle.
SERVES 4 TO 6

Ingredients

  • 2 1/4 lb/1 kg chicken thighs (about 8)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 or 3 mild peppers such as red bell pepper, Italian frying pepper, or
  • Anaheim chile, stemmed, seeded, and cut lengthwise into slices 1/4
  • in/6 mm wide 3 cups/720 ml Very Mushroomy Porcini Tomato Sauce
  • 1/2 cup/120 ml water, if needed
  • 1/2 cup/20 g coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley 10 oz/280 g
  • dried egg noodles, freshly cooked, tossed with 1 to 2 tbsp unsalted butter, and kept hot

Directions

  1. Generously season the chicken all over with salt and pepper. In a large
    frying pan (12 in/30.5 cm is a good size), heat the oil over mediumhigh
    heat.
  2. Add the peppers, season lightly with salt, and cook, stirring frequently,
    until lightly browned and starting to soften, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a
    plate.
  3. Return the frying pan to mediumhigh heat; you shouldn’t need to add any
    more oil. Arrange the chicken pieces, skin-side down, in the pan in a single
    layer. (If they don’t all fit comfortably in a single layer, you’ll need to use a
    second pan and a little more oil.) Reduce the heat to medium and cook,
    turning once, until nicely browned on both sides, about 7 minutes per side.
  4. Pour off any visible chicken fat (save the fat and use it for cooking potatoes
    another time; it is delicious), return the peppers to the pan, and add the
    tomato sauce. If the sauce doesn’t cover the chicken by about halfway, stir
    in up to 1/2 cup/120 ml water.
  5. Adjust the heat to maintain a nice simmer, cover, and cook, turning the pieces once halfway through cooking, until the chicken is cooked through and is very tender when you poke it with a knife, about 30 minutes more.
  6. Transfer the chicken to a platter or warmed dinner plates. Add the parsley to
    the sauce and season with salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over the
    chickenand serve right away with the noodles.

CARAMELIZED ONION COULIS


Onions are a beautiful vegetable to transform into a sauce because their
flavor is sweet and their texture is silky and melting. They won’t get that
way, however, if you don’t give them enough time to caramelize slowly, so
don’t rush the cooking and be sure they don’t brown too quickly.
2 tbsp unsalted butter
MAKES 11/2 CUPS/360 ML

Ingredients

  • 11/2 lb/680 g onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig, 4 in/10 cm long
  • 1/4 cup/60 ml crème fraîche, plus more if needed
  • 1/2 cup/120 ml homemade turkey broth, chicken or vegetable broth,
  • or canned reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice, plus more if needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. In a large, heavy frying pan, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add
    the onions and salt and stir to mix. Once the onions start to steam and sizzle
    a bit, cover the pan, reduce the heat to medium, and cook until the onions
    are starting to get juicy and soft, about 10 minutes.
  2. Uncover, turn the heat to low, and cook slowly, stirring and scraping
    frequently, until the onions have collapsed and are starting to turn golden.
    After about 30 minutes, toss in the rosemary and keep cooking, taking care
    to scrape the bottom of the pan so nothing burns, until the onions are sweet
    and deeply golden, 1 to 11/4 hours total.
  3. Scrape the onions into a blender and return the pan to medium heat. Add the
    crème fraîche and broth, bring to a simmer, and deglaze the pan, scraping
    up all of the good brown bits on the pan bottom. Add the contents of the
    pan to the blender along with the lemon juice and process until you have a
    smooth purée.
  4. Taste and season with a few twists of pepper, then adjust with more salt, pepper, or lemon if needed. If the purée is too thick, add a bit more crème fraîche.

STORAGE

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 days. The sauce does not freeze well.

QUICK CHANGE

Use olive oil instead of butter and vegetable broth
instead of crème fraîche to make the sauce vegan.

SMOKY RED PEPPER COULIS


This is a slight “upgrade” on a basic roasted red pepper sauce. I like to use a
mix of peppers (bell and pimiento are great together) when I can find
interesting sweet varieties at the farmers’ market, and I like the way the
smoked paprika extends that sweet pepper flavor. Vinegar keeps the
sweetness balanced. I love this sauce drizzled over fat grilled shrimp or
slices of rare grilled flank steak.
MAKES 1 CUP/240 ML

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 lb/910 g mixed sweet red peppers, stemmed, seeded, and cut
  • lengthwise into strips 1/2 in/12 mm wide
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 large clove garlic, smashed
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig, 4 in/10 cm long
  • 1 1/2 tsp Spanish sweet smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp sherry vinegar, plus more if needed

Directions

  1. In a heavy, medium frying pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the
    peppers, 1 tsp salt, garlic, and rosemary. Cover, and cook the peppers until
    they start to release some steam, about 3 minutes.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook the peppers slowly until they become very soft and sweet and have released some juices, about 30 minutes more.
  3. Uncover, add the paprika, and cook until the juices are reduced to a thick glaze, 8 to 10
    minutes. Stir in the vinegar, remove from the heat, and let cool slightly.
  4. Transfer the pepper mixture to a blender or food processor and purée; add a little water or broth if the sauce is too thick.
  5. Taste and adjust the salt and vinegar, if needed, for a sweet-tangy balance. Push the sauce through a sieve for a perfectly smooth texture. (You can use it unstrained, too. You just detect tiny bits of skin in the sauce.)

STORAGE

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days or
freeze in a ziplock freezer bag for up to 3 months.

QUICK CHANGE

Add 1 fresh hot red chile, stemmed, seeded, and
chopped, with the sweet peppers.


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