There’s nothing better than low and slow cooked pasta sauce. I remember my mother making her sauce with sausage and meatballs. I also remember the mess all over her kitchen. That won’t happen when you use a crockpot to simmer your sauce.
I was going to make this bolognese sauce, but it has a lot of ingredients, including milk. I wasn’t sure that dairy-free milk would work in a reduction with tomatoes, so I decided to whip up my own recipe, using sausage instead of ground beef.
This recipe makes about six servings.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 lb ground sausage
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 6 oz can tomato paste
1 cup red wine or broth
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon Mrs. Dash original seasoning
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
1- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon baking soda*
Line a 6-quart crockpot. Remove sausage from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before cooking to allow to come to room temperature. This will aid in the browning process.
Pat sausage dry with paper towels. Heat a large stainless steel skillet over medium-high heat. Add a half tablespoon olive oil and heat until shimmering. Place ground sausage in the pan and allow to brown, about five minutes. Do NOT disturb the meat. When you see a brown crust starting to form, flip the meat over to the other side and let brown an additional 3-4 minutes. Begin breaking up sausage and cook until no longer pink. It’s very important to thoroughly cook the meat here. The crockpot won’t get hot enough to cook it through. Remove sausage to the crockpot.
Reduce heat to medium. Add the additional half tablespoon olive oil to the pan and cook onions until soft. Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add wine or broth to pan, and let reduce by half, scraping up any browned bits from skillet. Pour remaining wine or broth and any browned bits into crockpot.
Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and seasonings on top of meat and onions. Stir to incorporate.
Set crockpot on high and cook for 20 minutes. Reduce setting to low and continue to cook for additional 5-6 hours, stirring occasionally.
*If sauce is too acidic, add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda in the last hour or so of simmering. The sauce might bubble a little-that’s ok.
Serve over your favorite gluten free pasta.
You can’t overcook this sauce. The longer it simmers, the better it gets. And of course, it gets even better after a couple of days.
My husband raved about this sauce. You will too!