Sauce Talk 06

More discussions about Italian food and family. Good times at the table and in the kitchen


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Anthony! You Rock!! I’m saving this website to my desktop and first thing I’m trying is the eggplant Parmesan! You’re step-by-step photo instructions have me convinced that I, too, can be a better cooking Italian! Thank you – this website is GREAT! ~ Kathi (Zuffi)
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Zuffi, Have fun with the recipes. The Eggplants Parmesan is awesome, trust me! 🙂 Be sure to let me know how it all comes out. Happy cooking. ~8-) Anthony


Dear Anthony, BEST SAUCE EVER!!! I just wanted to take a moment and THANK YOU for making this web site. If you weren’t already married, I fly out and kiss ya straight on the mouth!! THAT’S how good this sauce recipe is!! Growing up in an Irish/Norwegian Midwest household, I never experienced a REAL Italian dinner until I married an Italian man when I was 27. His Grandma made sauce like I’d never tasted before and I was hooked! Alas, we eventually divorced and so ended the Sunday family dinners for me. My daughter and I still eat a lot of pasta, but until now we usually got the jar sauce of a local Italian restaurant and dolled it up to try and taste like my ex-grandma-in-law’s, Grandma Ragusa – big surprise, it never tastes like hers!! Grandma Ragusa has never written down her recipe and starts making it in the wee hours of the morning when no one else is around. The one ex-sister-in-law that actually watched her make it one time won’t share the recipe with anyone else!!! Ok, so in a roundabout way you now know why I was searching for a really great recipe for sauce. I made your sauce with meatballs and pork chops for dinner yesterday and I almost had to club my brother and brother-in-law over their heads for trying to take all the leftover sauce home!! Everyone LOVED it – everyone had at least two plates, thank goodness I made triple the amount of meatballs!! This recipe is by far the BEST sauce I’ve ever had (Sorry, Grandma R., but you should have shared the recipe!!) and I will be making this at least twice a month (of course on Sundays!!) for a long, long time. I can’t wait to take a batch to my mom and dad’s house so they can taste a little bit of heaven!! I can’t wait to try to the other recipes!! I love your commentary, pictures and grocery lists…..it makes me a little misty, almost like I was back in the family! LOL. ~ Take care, ~ Karen!
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Karen, Auh, da powa of da sauce! 😉 Glad to hear you loved the sauce and it came out good for you. It’s a lotta work no? But very worth the effort. You tripled the meatball recipe!! Smart lady! This cuts down on the fights for the last meatball. 😉 In our house the problem was the braciole. There was never enough and everyone always eyed the last one! Did you make the braciole yet? It really adds to the flavor of the sauce and is delicious! I totally understand those memories of big Sunday dinners. Just wonderful! The wonderful food, the family and friends, the music, so much love in the room! That’s why the sauce was so good, grandma Salerno poured so much love into her cooking! It was not just cooking, it was a pure labor of love. That is what I learned from her, the passion behind the cooking! This is where the flavor is. You know, it’s funny you mention “ex-grandma-in-law’s”. The majority of my email from the site are from those that had ex-grandma-in-law’s that could make killer spaghetti sauce and now they are not around and the recipe was always this mysterious secret never to be known. All very sad really. This is not a sauce you will find in restaurant, because they just can’t make the sauce all day, nor do they pour the love required into it. Jar sauce?? Well I won’t go there. No, sauce must be labored over all day and love must be poured into the cooking for it to taste the way it should 🙂 Hope it goes well with your mom and dad, may they enjoy every bite! The best part about this kind of meal is that it brings family together. Not just the eating time, but the cooking time as well. I still remember the smells in my grandma’s house when I was a kid, and the smells in my moms house as well because she made the same sauce. Geesh! My whole childhood was just filled with the smell of sauce and meatballs and braciole, and… well, you get the idea. Wonderful memories. No pressure, but I would love to get some more photos for my “Visitors Photo” page. It seems to be all guys sending in the photos. So maybe one day when your making the sauce you can snap some photos of all the cooking fun. Anyway, would love to get more photos to add to the site. Well happy cooking and remember to pour the love into the food, it adds a lot more flavor to it. ~8-) Anthony
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Dear Anthony, Thanks for the quick reply, I’d be happy to take some pictures next time I make ‘da sauce’ and YES, I’ll be making braciole – pictures will be forthcoming….look for an email in about two weeks (maybe three weeks on the outside). You’re SOOOOOOO right about ‘love in the sauce”….Here’s the way I think about cooking – some people don’t like to do it (it’s too time consuming,it’s too messy, blah, blah, blah…whatever), I see making something delicious and sharing it with family and friends as an extension of how I feel for them – it’s kinda like love that you can consume – yes? Very worth the effort!! Time to run for now, but I’ll be sure to send some pictures!! Take care and God bless, ~ Karen


Anthony, I was having a crabby day …. decided to search for a new sauce recipe,, came across your site. This is the most entertaining well thought out site I have seen in a long time. Thank you for making my day. Although I have not yet actually started to try to make the sauce yet, I am dancing around the house dancing to your grandma’s scratchy music. Your grandma(s) must be extremely proud of you. Now, off to trash my kitchen ………. hope it tastes as good as it looks. ~ Susan, Albuquerque, NM
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Susan, Let me know how it all comes out… I’m sure if you follow the instruction carefully you will sufficiently trash your kitchen.. There is nuttn’ better than scratchy grandma music for dancn’ around the house. It also does a great job of removing one’s crabbiness.. ~8-) Anthony.
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Anthony, Well: It is done. Yes my kitchen is a mess, yes the house was full of smoke. The taste is awesome, only small little thing is it has a small sour taste to it, not bitter, but sour, but that may be because I did not have the correct wine on hand and had to use a Merlot. Only other question I have for you is that it was extremely thick, so much so that I had to turn it off 45 minutes before you suggested becasue I was afraid it was going to start sticking and burning even though I was stirring it constantly. From reading some of your emails, I noted that people and you said it was not as thick as store bought, but for me it was quite the opposite. If I added more water, would I also have to adjust the spices. I will definitely make this again, was quite worth the work, just wondered about the thickness. ~ Susan
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Susan Yes, you would want to add more water in the middle of the cooking if you notice it getting too thick. Not sure why it was too thick, you may have had some of the measurements off slightly. But sauce is a very forgiving cooking experience. You add more water, let it cook for a while, then taste. If at this point you notrice a lack of flavor, then you will want to spice it up some more with more Orgeno, Basil, Garlic powder, fresh chopped parsley, pepper and so on. Just a little bit at a time. You add a tiny bit, let it cook in for a while and taste again. Too little is ok, but if you but to much spice, this can be a problem. As far as the sour taste? Hmm, not sure what could cause that. Did you put the sugar in? The little bit off sugar added during the recipe cuts down on any bitterness you may get from the tomato seeds. Well, happy cooking and hope this helps. ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, I am so excited that I am on the verge of tears!!! My husbands grandparents came to America from Italy and he grew up eating all of the delicious foods from there. I was introduced to the incredible tastes of Italian sauces and meatballs, and my absolute favorite braciole!!!! His mother passed away in 1996 and we married in 1997. She had been sick and I had not gotten the chance to learn any of her recipes (not even the sauce). We have not had any truly Italian cooking since about 1999. I have been desperately desiring some braciole but didn’t even know how to spell it to try to find recipes. I was so excited to come across your website today… I can tell that these are great family recipes and not some Americanized version. (the same ones that my husbands family use to make and that I wished so desperately that I had learned). I can’t wait to start practicing and I hope that I will one day master them. Thank you so much for sharing your family recipes. I am headed back to the site now to check out the lasagna and eggplant recipes. ~ Michelle.
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Michelle, Glad to be of service. I know what you mean about being excited to be able to cook like you remembered your grand parents cooking. I have always loved my grandma’s cooking and asked a lot of questions too 🙂 I have many more, I just have to find the time to right down all the details. So many of the recipes are just in my head, it’s a lot of work to “actually measure” ugh! Just not the Italian way, but when trying to explain how to cook the recipes to someone, all the tiny steps are necessary and there are a lot of little tiny steps that make a HUGE difference! Well I’m happy to share with you. Happy cooking and be sure to let me know how things turn out with the recipes. I’m sure you will just love them! Also feel free to send photos of you cooking and having fun with the recipe. Would love to add more photos to the new visitors photos section on my site which is located here. No pressure though 😉 ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, I have just discovered your website and want to thank you for it! You see, I am of Italian descent, but my parents and all my siblings have passed away. I often have questions about Italian cooking, and have no one to ask! I was pleased to read your eggplant recipe, as your procedure is exactly the same as the one my mom taught me…with the exception of one thing. After she had all the eggplant slices salted down in the collander and the plate placed upside down on top of them, she used a gallon of olive oil as a weight! Since I do not purchase olive oil by the gallon, I have substituted a tea kettle, filled with water, as my weight..works just as good. I have never heard of the bar cookies you have on your site and doubt that I will make these…too much work. I do have a question for you, however. When my husband and I went to my high school reunion a couple of years ago, we were introduced to eggplant rollatini, and love it. I have been able to duplicate this dish except for one thing. I have not been able to slice the eggplant evenly, lenghwise, so have resorted to making the usual round slices, and then just placing the ricotta filling in between two slices of eggplant. Please help me come up with a name for this dish, my Italian is rather rusty, since I have lived away from the east coast for many years! I plan to make my sauce and meatballs today, a very lengthy process, since I make sufficient to share and to freeze, and plan to use your process of making an ‘Italian Roux’ with the tomato paste; I usually mix the paste with the chopped tomatoes in my blender first, to be sure it is blended in well and doesn’t “sink” to the bottom of the pot, as my mother warned me! Once again, thanks for bringing back many memories of my mom and my nonna, now it’s time for this mom/nonna to get to work! ~ Sincerely, Carmella
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Carmella, Glad you enjoyed the site 🙂 I too use a tea pot filled with water for pressing down the eggplant slices. I now have pictures of that added to the site. But I never heard of the gallon of olive oil for the eggplant weight, I think I like that better 🙂 I “do” buy olive oil by the gallon, next time I make the eggplant I’m gonna use this method. Maybe there is some osmosis that takes place between the olive oil on top of the eggplants that adds secret flavor 😉 One thing you can do to get your eggplants slice evenly long-wise is to peel your eggplants and then cut off round portions of the eggplant lengthwise creating a long rectangle. You cut it until you have four flat side. There is a lot of eggplant waste with this method so you would have to get more eggplants than the recipe calls for but once you have a long rectangular eggplant you can then make long even slices. What to call the eggplant rollatini with slices? Hmmm…. eggplant rollatinios – os for the slices? I don’t know, maybe not. As far as the tomatoes sinking to the bottom of the pot…. This is why I mention over and over again “don’t forget to stir the sauce!!!!” 😉 Well happy cooking! ~8-) Anthony


Dear Anthony, First I have to thank you a million times for this website. My grandmother passed away when I was very young, but I remember her sauce well. Unfortunately, I had no idea HOW she made the sauce…just remember that magical bay leaf floating around and the wonderful aroma in the house. No one bothered to keep tabs on how she made it work! I have tried every jarred pasta sauce there is… From Ragu and Classico…to spending $20 + for a bottle looking for THAT taste. I have been hesitant to try recipes that I have found because they contain such a wide variety of spices, and none of it FELT right…Capisce? Sooo….I have been searching off and on over the years and I think the gods felt bad for me today and lead me to your site. I would like to ask you a few questions though before I start cooking. First, I know the parsley has to be fresh, but I was wondering if I could use all fresh ingredients and just double the quantity or have you had better results with the dry for some reason . Also, you use regular olive oil right? not extra virgin or anything like that? I know that in the braciole you specify to use fresh grated Parmesan. Is this also recommended for the meatballs? I am really looking forward to giving this recipe a try, and I will let you know how it turns out. I would like to thank you for giving so much time to this site and helping to bring the memory or my grandmother back. I just have a feeling that this sauce will be special for me. Salute. ~ Angelina.
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Angelina, You name reminds me of that wonderful “Louis Prima – Angelina”, …” I eat Anti-pasta twice, ’cause she isa so a nice, Angelina!”…Angelina, the lady at the pizzeria!.. such a great song…. Anyway, Hi! I’m glad to be of service 🙂 Jarred sauce? Noooooooooooooooo…… Evil stuff! Just not the grandma quality. There is such a difference between sauce that is made all day with love vs. something manufactured. Oh the difference if phenomenal! ok, to answer your questions. Fresh stuff. The only think I use “fresh” is garlic, parsley and pParmesan(if I can find a nice block of it). Everything else is dry, ’cause that’s how my grandma Salerno did it so that’s how I do and that is the law! 😉 .. and yes, fresh pParmesanin the meatballs if you have it available, although I have made it with the Kraft grated parmesan and it comes out fine, but the fresh does taste better. Extra virgin olive oil is a + but not required. I some times use the extra virgin if I have it on hand. Well, I have to run, big 4th of July weekend. I have to make some Lasagna today and I must get hopping to the grocery store. Have an awesome weekend and happy cooking! ~8-) Anthony


Dear Anthony, Please can you help me convert the meat balls recipe into one I understand for us Europeans? I’m in England, and can’t find any preferred brands of Hunts/Progresso for the tomatos. However, I don’t understand the difference you imply in the tomato paste, tomato puree. Here we can buy a tube of tomato paste, labelled “Double concentrate tomato”. The tube is about 9″ long by 1.5″. Also, we can buy someting approx 6oz in a can named tomato pure, equally labelled “touble concentrate tomato”. Then, we have plain chopped or plum tomatos. There is always pasatta too, which is again just pure tomatos liquidised but not double concentrate. I want to understand what the 28oz cans of tomato puree actually contain and what the UK equivalent is. We don’t have Progresso 28oz cans here. I actually made the sauce, using our tube of double concentrate paste and the 6oz cans, which were both thick tomato sauces.Then I threw in a single 16oz can of tomatos (chopped rather than diced but must be the same). I then addd the juice of a tin of plum tomatos, and the result was gorgious, but too thick I think. Any ideas what the UK/European equiv of the Progresso tomatos is?? Is it pasatta?? Many thanks, ~ Brian

PS. After chopping my French stick in half for the garlic bread, do I bake it for 9 mins closed i.e. together again, or open with both halves open?? I did it open, and it seemed to crust up too much. … How long ( if at all) should the Braciole be fried for once rolled/tied and before its placed in the meat sauce?? The recipe instructs to put it in the hot pan, and then to put it straight into the sauce. It doesn’t suggest how long to fry it for. I’d guess its to just brown it off, but is that right?? Also, why use garlic powder when there is so much fresh garlic already included in the meat sauce recipe?? I don’t know what the difference is between garlic powder (or what we have is garlic granules) and freshly chopped garlic.
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Hi Brian, Sorry for the amazingly long delay in responding to this email. I have been swamped and have been going through all my emails and cleaning things up and archiving and so on and came across this email from you that I don’t think I have not responded to. Sorry ’bout that. Well better late then never I guess. OK – I have some questions to answer here don’t I. Well let’s see. Where shall I start. Let’s start with the paste. The tube of paste you mention is equivalent to the can’s of paste I mention in my recipe. I’m not sure how many oz. are in 9″x1.5″ tube but the equivalent should be 170g. I call for (2) 6 oz.. cans of paste which would be a total of 340g, so whatever the tubes add up to in total grams try to get as close to 340g as you can.I have updated my site since you last visited with metric equivalents, this may help also: (2) 28 oz. / (2) 800g Tomato Puree’ (“Hunts”) or Tomato Sauce (“Progresso”) Puree’ is tomatoes blended done to a sauce with the consistency of something like a applesauce. While tomato sauce has the consistency of something like ketchup. (2) 6 oz. / (2) 170g Tomato Paste (preferably “Hunt’s”) (1) 16 oz. / (1) 450g Diced Tomatoes (preferably “Hunt’s”) Chopped tomatoes and diced tomatoes are basically the same. Overall it sounds like what you came up with for what was available to you works fine. All you have to do is if the sauce is coming out to thick, just add couple 6 oz. can full of water to the sauce and cook some more. Once you have the base with all the goodies in it then getting to the consistency you want at that point it just a matter of how long you cook it. If to thin you cook it longer on low heat to cook off some of the extra water/liquid. If to thick then you add a bit more water and cook it down again until you get to the thickness that you like. As far as the added garlic powder, well I like to add that because it’s a powder and spreads out through the sauce a lot more than the fresh chopped garlic. You need the fresh chopped garlic for that wonderful fresh taste and I add the garlic powder so the garlic taste spreads out through the sauce even more. It just gives it a little extra kick 🙂 As far as garlic granules as you mentioned, not sure what that is so you will have to experiment I guess. Hope all this helps. Happy Cooking 🙂 ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, I would like to make this cookie for my parents 50th wedding anniversary. Can it be frozen so that I can make it in advance? If so, how long can it be frozen? It looks great! The pictures make is seem less intimidating to try. Please email at your earliest convenience. Have a Blessed day. ~ Patricia
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Patricia, You know? I have never tried to freeze these cookies. They are so darn good, I never have time to freeze them because they disappear so quickly. I usually put them in a nice sealed cookie jar and they can last a good few weeks that way. Other then that I’m sure they can be frozen, but not sure what it would do with the taste. If you do freeze them and then thaw them out, let me know how they come out. Be sure to taste the fresh ones (which I’m sure you will, the temptation will be just too great!) then try them again after thawed out and compare the taste. Then please let me know of the results. I would like to add this information to my recipe. If it’s not to much trouble (if you freeze them) please let me know how you froze them and for how long and how you thawed them out etc…. Thanks, ~8-) Anthony


Hello Anthony, I have stumbled around forever trying to find a real pasta sauce and thankfully found yours. I grew up back east in Connecticut and the craziest Italian family lived across the street. Us kids were best friends with those kids. The father worked for Progresso foods in New York City and their house ALWAYS had something on the stove. We were a French & Hungarian family, and our neighbors next door were Norwegian. Quite a melting pot for one block. Anyway, made the sauce this past weekend and it was to die for. My question, I now live in Klamath Falls, Oregon (WHERE???) (also known as B.F.E. ) and some products were hard to find. Every type of Chianti but the Ruffino Classico you mentioned-found a wicker basket wrapped bottled called Bell’Agio so I was stuck with that one. Also, for the olive oil, found the Filipio Berio, will wonders never cease, and bought the one for the sautéing and grilling, any difference between extra virgin, etc.? As far as the base products, used Hunts Puree`, notice in your pics you use Hunts Tomato sauce. My sauce was a little on the thick side, but I prefer it that way, just wondering if puree or sauce is better. This sauce is so fantastic, and reading your recipe brought back memories from my childhood that are priceless. My friends Grandma would put the big pot of sauce on the kitchen table and call us kids to gather around and “tell me what pieces you want” and fish out sausage, pork chops, meatballs, etc. She used to smack her grandson on the back of the head because he would lean way over the pot and get in her way (he couldn’t wait to eat) . The classic LOUD, loving, ( Mafia related-I swear) family. Your sauce was very similar. I got a kick out of your bathrobe in your lasagna recipes. That’s next to make. Didn’t make the Braciole, that’s next to go with the lasagna. Thought I might have enough left over sauce to make a lasagna from Sunday’s meal but it is now Tuesday and we have been eating it since Sunday for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and sneaking a cold meatball out of the sauce in the meantime here and there. What a meal!!! Screwed up the garlic bread, indulged in too much of the grape while preparing the sauce, you know, some for the sauce, some for the cook, some more for the cook, save some for the sauce, but wound up pleasantly buzzed and let the bread char a little too much, but a success anyway! Loved it, will never make any other sauce but this. You are to be worshiped! Thank you very much for everything. What an awesome website! ~ Danielle in Klamath Falls (B.F.E.) actually about 300 miles south of Portland.
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Danielle, First, thanks for the kind words about the site. I have poured a lot of love into it. Its a nice to share no? 🙂 Yes, I go back and forth between Sauce and Puree’, I don’t really notice a difference either way. Regardless of which I use the end result is always based on how long I cook the sauce. I usually cook the sauce until I get it to the oh so perfect consistency I’m looking for. Usually the sauce is finished and all the meatballs and braciole is all cooked and then the last 30 min. to 1 hour is just cooking down the sauce to remove any excess water, thus bringing it to the thickness I’m looking for. But this is a very delicate process. It must not be cooked on to high of a temperature and or to long of a period of time, because you can burn/overcook the sauce which would ruin the whole thing. So it’s cook, taste, a little wine, cook, taste, cook, taste, a little more wine, cook, taste, cook, taste, etc… until you have perfection! 🙂 I always fine myself saying out load something like “Hmm! Auuh! OH GOD that’s good!!!!” Even if I’m by myself. Sometime I feel I could just fill up a bowl with the sauce and consume it like soup 😉 I just love your statement below about the grandma smacking her grandson up-side the head. LOL!!!! I remember this! I used to get smacked up-side the head from my grandma when I tried to steel a meatball. High risk, trying to steel meatballs. You screwed up the garlic bread.. oh bummer. You see, I made some specific notes on this. I believe I remember mentioning to pay very close attention to the garlic bread when cooking… um, but I did not mention about the hazards of a little too much vino. That tends to slow down reaction time 😉 You like the robe? My mother in-law made that for me. Nice and colorful. Everyone should cook in their bathrobe. he he he Let me know how the Lasagna comes out. It would be awesome if you took some photos of the process. 😉 Would like to get more photos up in the “Visitors Photo” area. Ciao, Happy cooking! ~8-) Anthony


HI Anthony, GOD BLESS YOU I was looking for a good spaghetti sauce because I was tired of mine (sorry for my English I am from Quebec Canada(FRENCH)). So I was on the google search and thank God I saw your site. I don’t know if everyone is like me but I was so anxious preparing that sauce that my wife says I was like a kid at x mas time. My wife and kids (2 boy and girl) and mother in law just really loves it. So after a full day at work I went to the store to by everything that I need and start the recipe at 5:30pm I don’t like wine but I drink a couples of bud lights during the culinary trip. So I taste the sauce at around 10:00pm when my wife and children was sleeping, I didn’t have the choice to woke up my wife and tell her about the wonder full, magical, unbelievable, incredible taste of that sauce. So at 10:30 I call my mother (she lives in Florida) and tell her about that recipe and she decided to do it the next morning. Her best friend lives in Quebec and she is Italian and my mother says that your sauce was just like her best friend was preparing when they were at college so that gives her a bunch of old souvenirs. I will try to send you pictures of my next experience. Thanks again it really relax me after a big day at work. As the blues brothers says you are on a mission from GOD. So don’t stop your mission. ~ Thank you. Nico From Quebec.
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Nico, WoW! I’m on a mission from God! Cool! I like that 🙂 Blue Brothers, great movie! I’m so glad you enjoyed the sauce. I’m glad to be of service 🙂 Italian cooking is more like an event! Always lots of fun. There is so much effort that gets poured into really good homemade Italian food, that when it’s all finally ready to eat, it just makes it taste all that much better because you worked so hard preparing it. For one to produce really great Italian food there has to be passion about the cooking and love poured into it. I remember my grandma Salerno’s cooking because she poured so much love into it 🙂 I remember one time I only had one plate of spaghetti and I remember my grandma saying: “What? You know like a my cooking?, Eat, your skinny, eat some a more spaghetti”. After that I always had at least two plates or more. Note: (Secret Italian grandma relation hint), always have more than one plate of her food, she will love you for it 🙂 Would LOVE to get some photos from you next time you make the recipe. Would be a great addition to the site. …Well, happy cooking and have a fantastic day!
~8-) Anthony -)


Alright anthony…. I didn’t spend 8 years in college to cook sauce all day, but my boyfriend goes on and on and on about his Grandma’s Italian sauce and to be honest with you if I have to sit through one more Sunday with his attempts to duplicate it, the world will run out of TUMS. I have just finished my first attempt and am in the last cooking stage (I realize that this will take more than one attempt). Looks good…was only missing the bay leaf and parsley…I know you said this was important…will do next time.I think it tastes extremely nice….I’ll let you know what he says, but I just wanted to thank you for the detailed instructions. All the little details are important to make sauce and no one puts the effort into posting them! You also have those instructions for the braciole…the mysterious meat Nick can’t remember! I’m doing that next time as well! ~ Thanks! Melissa and Nicholask
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Melissa, Hi, sorry for the amazingly long delay in responding to this email. I have been swamped and have been going through all my emails and cleaning things up and archiving and so on and came across this email from you that I don’t think I have responded to. Well better late then never I guess. …Never under estimate the power of grandma. You see with Italians, there is always this strong memory of grandma making the sauce and all the traditions and family and love that goes with it all. When one eats spaghetti sauce, meatballs and braciole like grandma used to make, all those wonderful memories come flooding back to one’s mind and it’s just all hard to explain. The other problem is that these grandmas we speak of, never had any of these wonderful recipes written down for their descendants to enjoy. So it all ends up as one big mystery and secret. How did grandma make that magical sauce, one might say, who knows! another might say, oh well, guess the sauce is lost forever and so on. The one good thing I did when I was a kid was pay attention to how my grandma and mom made their sauce and then one day I “finally” wrote each step down. Not an easy task I might add. Cooking good spaghetti sauce really is an art and act of love, hard to write that down. ~ Well happy cooking! You may want to revisit the site. I’ve made many revisions and updates since your last visit. New recipes and tons of new photos. ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, I worked for two days making the sauce just right, making the filling for the steaks. Pounding them ever so thin, tying them up into neat bundles. Everything worked fine and tasted great. I cut the bundles into workable pieces so the idiots wouldn’t have to cut them themselves. So what did I hear my family say? “Pass the meatballs, please.” MEATBALLS! I’m insulted. ~ Marilynn
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Marilynn, I have been doing some clean up in my email archives and have noticed this email from you that I received months ago! I don’t think I ever responded to this email, so sorry! Well better late then never. > LOL! Yes I have experienced this insult myself. They just don’t understand the sweat, the hard work and the love that gets poured into the braciole. Ugh! Oh well, don’t ever stop pouring love into your cooking, there will be those who do appreciate it’s worth and will love you for it 😉 Sorry again for missing your email. I get so much email, it’s hard to keep up with it all. ~8-) Anthony

P.S. I see this email is back from last August! Yikes! Well you may want to take a visit back to the site when you get some time. There has been many additions. More recipes, More photos, Moore goodies.


Dear Anthony,  Thank you so much for the spaghetti recipe!! I tried it for the 1st time. It was wonderful!! My family loved it!! We for the past 4 years used store bought Classico sauce. You should have seen the faces on my family when they dug into my home made Anthony’s recipe!!!!!!!!!!! They couldn’t stop eating!!!!!!!! Excuse me while I Belch!!!!! Thank you so much for a wonderful recipe. This will remain my secret every time I serve this to my friends and family!!!! Oh yeah, the Italian music in the background worked wonders also!!!! My fingers smell like an Italian Grandmother!!!! Thanks again!! ~ Ron
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Ron, This is exactly why I created this web site…. So people who have only been using the Jarred sauce (excuse me while I shutter.!..)… can now make a lovely homemade sauce the way it’s supposed to be made, fresh and wonderful! I’m glad it game out good for you. You see I original spelled out the process for my Dad who I believe had the cooking ability of frying eggs and that’s about it…. He got it right on the first try! So I know I achieved my goal of creating a Spaghetti Sauce recipe that anyone can make, I knew that if my Dad can cook by following the recipe… anyone could! :)) Oh yes… good Italian music helps a whole bunch. Well… Mangia Attute ~8-) Anthony

P.S. Tell the family I said hi… and NO MORE eating sauce from a Jar, it’s enough to make a grown Italian man cry…


Dear Anthony,  I just started making my own sauce and I like to make my sauce with puree and some paste (along with the other usual ingredients) my question to you is…..how do you get the “raw-tasting tomato taste” out of the sauce……… I’ve cooked it a couple of hours and even put in some homemade meatballs, but it still has that “hasn’t cooked long enough” taste.!! ~ Kristen
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Kristen, Hi, well I don’ know of all the details of how you are cooking your sauce. All said and done you should be cooking the sauce for about 4 hours or so. Have you tried my recipe as written? I have never experienced a raw-tasting tomato taste with my sauce. It all has to do with the amount of time you cook the sauce and what goes in it of course 🙂 The meat cooking in the sauce adds tons of flavor, it’s a very important addition to the sauce and it’s not just thrown in so you can have some nice meat with the sauce. It’s actually a very important ingredient to the overall flavor of the sauce as well as the spices you add. Hope this helps 🙂 ~8-) Anthony


Dear Anthony, Love all of your recipes and believe you would give martha stewart and rachel ray a run for their money.. My mother, god bless her soul, use to make braciole by pounding the whole steak and rolling up the ingredients and tying it with string, cooking it in sauce and then slicing it. have you ever done that. thanks for bringing back memories of my best friend, my mother. gone 12 years now and not a day goes by..i have tears in my eyes thinking about her in the kitchen.. have a nice day. ~ Kathy
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Kathy, Just now seeing your email. You ended up in my spam folder 😉 Horrible when someone thinks your spam. Braciole, oh yes, my favorite! I recently made a special Braciole page that will give you details and there are photos as well. If you dig deep into the front page you will find it all. Have an awesome time cooking it all and may the wonderful memories come flooding back as the aroma fills your home! Happy Times and share the love!  ~8-) Anthony


Dear Anthony,  Well, this weekend was my first attempt to make my own homemade sauce and your recipe was a hit! I found your website and loved the detailed instructions and the pics. Everything looked so good.  Growing up as a child in an Italian house with having our big spaghetti dinner every Sunday, I knew I had to finally make an attempt. My daughter loved it and it reminded me so much of my Grandma’s sauce with the meatballs, sausage and pork all mixed in.Thanks so much for taking the time to create such a nice website for the ones that want to do it like our Grandma’s did. Believe it or not, my last name is Calzone. Yes, Calzone! So, you’d think I would have been making my own sauce a long time ago. Sunday dinners will be at my house from now on! Thanks again!! ~ Sincerely, Ms. Calzone
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Ms. Calzone, Congrats! So glad you finally tackled the task of carrying on the Sunday sauce tradition. It has been lost in many families and I am very happy to share all the secrets with you. The love MUST be shared! There is just something magical when your entire home is filled up with that all-day-cooked sauce smell. It’s like grandma is there with you. Wonderful! Happy times and share the LOVE! Ciao,) ~8-) Anthony



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