I can remember as a kid my mother making spaghetti sauce and how our home would be filled with the tantalizing aromas of garlic, tomato, and herbs that made us really hungry for dinner.
This is pretty close to my mother’s recipe with the addition of eggplant, which adds not only another layer of flavor but also a great consistency to the sauce. I hope you enjoy it as much as we have, and thanks to Mom!
2 lbs. ground round – I like to use a combination of ground venison and ground round
1- Large onion- diced small
1 red or yellow bell pepper- diced (optional, but adds a good sweet flavor
1 large container – fresh mushrooms- sliced
Large eggplant- peeled and diced into ½ inch squares
6 cloves of fresh garlic- minced (got to have it!)
2 -29 oz. cans San Marzano Tomatoes; this is a region of Italy, good soil, awesome flavor! You can get them at your local grocer or gourmet foods store
29 oz. can of tomato sauce
1- 4 oz. can of tomato paste
1/3 cup of pitted Kalamata olives- sliced
1 cup- merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon wine
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2- Tablespoons brown sugar
A pinch of Cinnamon powder
2 -tspns. Dark chile powder- (ancho is the best flavor, and it’s not hot)
3-teaspoons dried basil or 1 cup- fresh rinsed and chopped basil
1-Tablespoon- dried rosemary
2 Tbspns. – anchovy paste- you can buy it in a small tube by the tuna- it adds a great flavor you just can’t get with table salt alone, and no it doesn’t make the whole thing taste like fish!
1 – Tbspn- black pepper
Start browning the meat over med. High heat, add 1/3 of the olive oil, when meat is about ½ way, add the onions, eggplant and bell pepper(not the garlic, yet)
When the meat is thoroughly browned, add the tomato products, wine, brown sugar, chile powder, garlic, cinnamon, anchovy paste, herbs, olives and the rest of the olive oil
Reduce the heat to a good simmer, cover and allow to cook for 1 ½ hours on very low
Now add the sliced mushrooms, taste the sauce and correctly add salt or pepper if needed
Cover again, and simmer for another 30 minutes to 1 hour
Go ahead and start your water for your pasta, and heat up the oven to make your garlic toast
Your making me pretty darn hungry writing this, thanks a lot!
The Texas Gourmet