I’m thrilled to say that I am one of the newest members to join the Recipe Redux, a community of healthy food bloggers sharing recipes and guidance on how to eat healthier. The Recipe Redux motto? Every healthy recipe deserves to be delicious! I’ll be sharing a monthly recipe that’s been “reduxed” around a specific theme. November’s theme? A food memory for which I am thankful for. I didn’t have to think twice about the recipe I wanted to share: traditional Italian Sunday gravy.
Nothing is more Italian than Sunday dinner. And nothing is more commonly served at Sunday dinner than gravy—otherwise known as tomato sauce, red sauce, meat sauce, etc. Some of my fondest childhood memories come from the smells of my Mom’s Sunday gravy cooking on the stove at 2PM on a Sunday afternoon. My earliest misadventures were being caught, literally red handed, dunking slices of bread into the sauce while it was still simmering on the stove. This tradition continues today, only now it’s with my husband doing the dunking!
Traditional Sunday gravy is a meat infused sauce, and baby, there’s a lotta meat in there! I’ve “reduxed” my family’s recipe by cutting down on the meat and using just enough to infuse the sauce with flavor. Now don’t get me wrong, I do NOT think meat is unhealthy. But personally, I don’t think this sauce needs meatballs, Italian sausage, AND short ribs to flavor it. A little goes a long way!
Whether you call it gravy or sauce, here’s my Redux recipe. Manja!
Traditional Sunday Gravy [Red Sauce]
- Servings: 6-8 cups of sauce
- Time: 4-6 hours
- Difficulty: Easy
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1.5-2 pounds of beef short ribs (if you use pork ribs the sauce will be a lighter red vs. dark red)
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 6 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2-28 ounce cans of crushed tomatoes
- 2-28 ounce cans of pureed tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons of sugar
- 1 pinch of red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cup of fresh basil, chopped
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- Heat the oil in a large pot. Add the short ribs and brown on all sides. Remove to a plate and reserve.
- Add the onion to the pot. Sautee over a medium heat until translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for a few minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, sugar, and red pepper. Return the short ribs to the pot. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 4-6 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Adjust the seasoning of salt and pepper as needed. Stir in the basil and butter ten minutes before serving. Remove the short ribs and shred the meat before serving.
Serving suggestions: This sauce is the BEST when served on top of pasta or dunked with garlic bread. By all means add meatballs, Italian sausage, and extra short ribs if you’d like a meaty experience… OR consider adding some veggies, such as red and green bell pepper, mushrooms, or zucchini!
Clink the “InLinkz Frog” to view other Recipe Redux member recipes for November. I promise you’ll be “pinning” a few to try!