Tag Archives: sauce

Mama’s Meat Sauce

On busy days, I sometimes just feel like a good and simple homecooked meal.  With my mom visiting recently, she made my new house’s kitchen a real home by cooking good old fashioned meat sauce over pasta.  I love the veggies in it!

Mama’s Meat Sauce



  1. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  2. 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  3. 1 onion, sliced 
  4. 2 celery stalks, diced 
  5. 1 lb. ground turkey (or ground chicken or ground beef)
  6. 1 cup red wine
  7. 1 28oz. can diced tomatoes, drained, or tomato sauce
  8. 1 tablespoon tomato paste 
  9. 1/2 cup soy milk or soy creamer
  10. 4 or 5 chopped basil leaves or 2 tsp. dried basil
  11. generous pinch of red pepper flakes
  12. salt/pepper to taste
  13. 1/2 cup pasta water from cooked pasta
  14. 1 lb. corn pasta of choice, cooked al dente


  1. In large saute pan, heat olive oil over medium heat.  
  2. Add onion slices and cook until they soften, about 5 minutes.  
  3. Add carrot and celery and cook until tender, about 8 to 10 minutes.  
  4. Add ground turkey and cook until meat is no longer pink.  
  5. Add wine and cook until wine is evaporated.  
  6. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, red pepper flakes and salt/pepper.  
  7. Add soy milk and cook until sauce thickens, about 30 minutes.  
  8. Add pasta water if needed to thin sauce.  
  9. Serve over cooked pasta.  

Happy Allergy Free Eating!


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1 sauce, 4 ways

I had a banana with peanut butter on it the other day, and had forgotten how much I like (and miss!) peanut butter.  I haven’t been eating sandwiches, so peanut butter has fallen out of my diet… until I decided to make peanut sauce today.  It is spicy, flavorful, and goes on so may things!  Here are a few ideas…

Peanut Sauce

In a bowl, mix together:

1.5 cups of peanut butter (I use Skippy Natural because it’s only ingredients are peanuts, sugar, and oil)

4 tbsp. rice vinegar

2 tbsp. honey

2 tbsp. sesame oil

2 tbsp. (wheat free) soy sauce

2 tsp.  Asian chili and garlic sauce found in the ethnic food section of your grocery store (spiiicy!)

juice of one half of a lime

4 tbsp. warm water

Stir together and let sit for a little while to let the flavors blend.  If you want it thinner, add more water.

4 ways to use Peanut Sauce

On chicken.  I stir fry chicken tenderloins in pepper, paprika, and a little olive oil until outsides are crisp.  Then bake at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes to cook through.  Pour peanut sauce over the tenderloins and serve with some carrot shavings and chopped scallions.  Or, you can put the chicken tenderloins on skewers and drizzle sauce over each piece for a party pleaser!

Over pasta.  To spice up pasta night, cook your favorite spaghetti and serve with peanut sauce (with carrot shavings and chopped scallions on top).  You can also add chopped peanuts on top for some crunch.

On rice.  Use the peanut sauce as a stir fry sauce.  Cook your favorite rice and saute your favorite veggies, then pour peanut sauce over and mix well.  Add grilled chicken or pork for extra protein, if desired.

On veggies.  Use the peanut sauce as a veggie dipping sauce!  Peppers, carrots, cucumbers… all of your favorites!

Happy Allergy Free Eating!

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How do they make pasta without flour?  There are actually many different types of gluten and wheat free pasta… probably more than you think.  I usually buy corn or rice pasta.  The rice pasta can be very thin, and has a slight mealy texture to it… kind of like whole wheat pasta.  

Corn pasta is thicker and has great taste, but can stick together in clumps when it starts to cool.  Both are easy to find in the grocery store, but are definitely more expensive.

Now what to do with the pasta?  I usually like a whole lotta tomato sauce on it, but I have two other sauces that I like to mix it up with… eggplant sauce and seasonal pesto.

For tomato sauce, I like to roast my own.  I get two large cans of crushed tomatoes, preferably San Marzano.  San Marzano tomatoes really make a difference (Mom was always right on this one).  I pour them into a large pot and add 2 tbsp. tomato paste, 4 tbsp. olive oil, 2 tbsp. sugar, fresh or dried basil, parsley flakes, 2 tbsp. chopped garlic, pinch of salt and pepper to taste.  Roast at 375 degrees for about 45-60 minutes, stirring occasionally.

If you feel like adding a little flavor blast to your usual roasted tomato sauce… use eggplants!  I have blogged about this eggplant sauce before, but here is the link again.  Giada had a great idea to make sauce out of roasted eggplants instead of just usual tomatoes.  I wonder how other roasted veggies would taste as sauce…

Pesto is another one of my favorite sauces, mainly because it doesn’t just have to go on pasta.  You can put it on baked chicken, on sandwiches, or in eggs.  I have two different seasonal pesto recipes, both deee-lish.

Summer pesto is particularly delicious in the spring and summer when basil is fresh.  To make pesto, I tear and wash about 2-3 cups of pesto leaves (I usually just buy one of those plants in the grocery store).  Then in the food processor, I add the basil leaves, about one quarter cup of olive oil, one half cup of pasta water or chicken broth (so it isn’t so oily and heavy), one quarter to one half cup of pine nuts, pinch of salt and pepper.  Chop on high and add more broth or oil if it is too dry.  Then add to your favorite meal!

Winter pesto doesn’t rely on fresh basil, but broccoli!  I use broccoli rabe, which is the broccoli with the really long stems.  I cook one bunch in boiling water for about 5 minutes to soften then let them cool.  Then, in a food processor, add the cooked broccoli (you may have to cut it into smaller pieces to fit), one quarter cup of olive oil, one quarter cup of pasta water or the water that the broccoli was cooked in, one half cup of mozzarella cheese (I use the rice brand), one quarter cup chopped walnuts, two shakes of dried basil, 2 tsp. garlic salt, 2 tsp. lemon or regular pepper.  Chop on high, making sure all the broccoli gets combined.

Happy allergy free eating!  Hope you enjoy the pastabilities.

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Stuffed and Sauced

I LOVE making stuffed chicken breast.  There are so many different combinations and flavors, depending on your mood and what is in your fridge or pantry.  To make stuffed chicken, I cut each chicken breast length-wise so they look like pita pockets.  I then stuff, bake, and sauce!

My latest stuffed chicken breast recipe was roasted red peppers with a balsamic glaze.  I cut the chicken breasts lengthwise, stuffed them with red peppers, and baked them at 375 degrees for about a half hour.  While the chicken was cooking, I made the sauce.  In a small saucepan, I combined about one cup balsamic vinegar (it will reduce when heated), 2 tbsp. olive oil, some salt and pepper, and a few shakes of rosemary.  I then let it simmer on medium heat until the balsamic vinegar thickened.  When I decided that it was thick enough, I poured over the cooked chicken and enjoyed!

Here are my favorite sauces (each recipe is enough for one or two chicken breasts):

Balsamic Glaze, described above

Honey Mustard Sauce (from my mom’s cookbooks): Combine 2 tbsp. white wine vinegar, 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp. honey, 2 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tbsp. thyme

Italian Dressing: Combine 3 tbsp. olive oil, 3 tbsp. red wine vinegar, 1 tbsp. dijon mustard, 1 tsp. agave nectar or sweetener, a few shakes each of thyme, dill, rosemary

Asian Glaze: Combine 2 tbsp. sesame oil, 2 tbsp. honey, 2 tbsp. tamari (wheat free soy sauce), 1 tsp. garlic, ½ tsp. red pepper flakes, and 2 tsp. ginger

Here are my favorite stuffing combos:

Roasted red peppers and mushrooms

Ham and swiss (dairy or not)

Sun dried tomato and chopped basil

Green peppers and onions

Craisins and chopped pistachios

Spinach and parmesan (dairy or not)

Halved cherry tomatoes and artichokes

Canned pumpkin and chopped walnut

Chopped chili peppers, tomatoes, and olives

Getting creative in the kitchen is so fun.  Do you have any favorite combinations?


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