Entrees - Phase 1 - Spaghetti Sauce




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H-ko
01-22-2006, 04:23 PM
Yes, I know - spaghetti is not for phase 1! However, this sauce can be used for other things than on pasta, and it's phase 1 in and of itself. This is an old family favorite from my mother (more or less!).

Spaghetti Sauce

1 lb very lean ground beef*
1-2 cloves garlic, minced (or more to taste)
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup sliced celery
6 large mushrooms, cleaned and sliced, or 2 (4 oz) cans sliced mushrooms, drained
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes in juice, undrained**
2 (15 oz) cans tomato sauce**
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste**
2-4 T Italian herbs (or more to taste - I throw in a good handful)
a few grinds of black pepper
salt, if desired (we find the canned products add plenty of salt, so I don't add any more)
2 bay leaves

Brown beef in a saucepot; drain. Add garlic and cook briefly, until garlic begins to turn white. Add onion, celery, and mushrooms and saute until onion is tender. Add diced tomato and tomato sauce, and stir in tomato paste. Stir in seasonings. Bring to a simmer, and simmer gently for a few minutes (15-20 is usually adequate). Remove bay leaves before serving. Serve as desired; refrigerate leftovers.

This sauce reheats well, but I've never tried freezing it. If anyone tries it, I'd appreciate hearing how well it freezes.

I can't really give servings, since that depends on how you use it. It makes a few quarts - I'd estimate about 3-4 quarts, but that's a guess since it varies depending on how I make it each time. The vegetables are pretty flexible - you can put in more, or if you don't like one of the veggies, cut down on it and put in more of another. I wouldn't leave any of them out altogether, though, as they are all integral to the overall flavor of the sauce.

*I'd stick with beef - turkey doesn't have a strong enough flavor, IMHO
**make sure that these don't contain sugar or corn syrup or anything - check the ingredients first