Sauce Talk 08

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


< Previous Sauce Talk


Hi, I just wanted to thank you for sharing these recipes! I am not Italian and was born in Cincinnati, Ohio but was fortunate to have moved from Ohio, at the ripe age of 6, to Philly and then south Jersey. This was the beginning of my love affair with Italians and their food. I am forever grateful for the handful of years growing up on the east coast. I moved back to Cincy after 8-10 years on the east coast and was so distraught when I discovered that nobody in cincy knew how to make pizza, meatballs or a good ragu!!! Well, not to mention a philly cheese steak 😉 My mother stayed on the east coast and married an Italian so I would always look forward to visiting and getting my fill of good Italian food. I have been making spag & meatballs since I was tall enough to see the top of the stove…..not taught though…..I would pick up things here and there from neighbors and friends that were Italian and just figured it out eventually! 35 years since I moved from jersey and I still miss the food and the big families & gatherings….. Not a lot of Italians in Cincy but I love my city and home. I absolutely loved reading your web site and have been reading it all day today. I think this is the first time I have ever spent this much time on a web site but really enjoyed the recipes and stories. Took me back in time and very heart warming. I did manage to get to the market today and picked up some chuck to grind and perfect timing finding your blog because tomorrow is Sunday!!!! Can’t wait to wake up and get started on YOUR recipe for meatballs and sauce! I’m fairly convinced it will be better then mine but it will be close. My recipe is really similar but I usually do spices, sugar all at once versus at various times. AND I never learned the Italian rogue trick! Who knew….. I’m sure your recipe is going to be wonderful and I can’t wait for dinner tomorrow One last thing, I totally agree that America has gotten away from family dinner and just how important it really is. I do attribute a lot of our social and moral issues in this country stem from the breakdown of the family unit and the dinner table is the family unit…..I personally never got married or procreated and came from a family that was broken and NEVER had family dinners……guess that’s why I started cooking at such a young age.! But I totally agree family dinner is important and I was always envious of families that had that so it was heart warming to hear your stories and feel the love just from reading this! Thanks again for sharing and cheers to you and your family!
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Hi Julz, Wow, LOVE this email. It warms my heart to get email like this. The entire website I have created is a labor of love for me! Yes, there is a lot of good Italian cooking going on in the northeast for sure! I grew up in Springfield mass and had family in Boston. My grandmother lived in Worcester, MA, a lot of Italians there! I had had so many wonderful moment in the kitchen with my grandma Salerno when I was growing up. She taught me how to pour love into the cooking! I also LOVE Philly Cheese steaks!  So glad to hear you have been reading through the site. I have poured out a lot into it and tried to share the joy I experience growing up Italian-American. The family dinners where school for me. So much love, laughter and learning going on at the table for hours on end. We would literally have 6 hour dinners on Sunday. Was so amazing! I hope the sauce came out great today?  Nothing quite like the smells in the house when making the Sunday Gravy with all the meats. Glorious! Takes me back to a simpler time every time I make it! Oh I 1,000% agree with you about the moral decay of our nation and the breakdown of the family unit. Less time at the table with the family has caused great harm to the country. I think it’s huge! I am sorry to here about the broken family and that you did not have the joy of eating at the table with the entire family when you were growing up. If you were a neighbor we would have invited you to join us!! So happy to share with you! And glad you are not afraid to attack the project of Italian slow cooking like grandma did it! It’s such a joy and is becoming a lost art. I am going to keep fighting for the family dinners and the slow cooking! Ciao, Anthony
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Anthony! …the sauce was WONDERFUL! I followed it exactly except i put a dash of red pepper versus cajun seasoning but other than that I followed it and it will keep it as my spag sauce recipe. Meatballs were really good too! hats off you to and thanks again for sharing. very kind of you….. Thanks. Julz


Anthony, I just wanna thank you for your recipe. I have been waiting on my mom to send me my grandmothers recipe. It was by far the best I have ever had my whole life until she died, no other compared, my mom doesn’t make it the same way for a few reasons,one being the health factor cholesterol and junk…. So I found your recipe in the meantime, it was very similar to my grandmothers from what I can remember. I just wanna give you one tip that really adds to the flavor incredibly. When frying up all the meat, fry it up using LARD. WoW what flavor!!!!! Obviously not the best for yo,u but man it taste so good!!!! Anyway I made this last week and it was to die for, it actually tasted very similar to my grandmother she would have been proud. Thanks again. ~ Joe.
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Hey Joe, Glad you liked the sauce. It is wonderful when you get that special grandma taste that nothing can come close to, I understand the value of this. Thus why I have put so much energy into this site! This is also a way to make sure my children will keep on the traditions of grandma sauce, it must never die! Lard? Cook the meat in Lard? Hmmm…. I just don’t know, I’m thinking grandma Salerno would not approve… Although, I might just have to try this out one day. But I sure won’t let any of my relatives know about it. Would never hear the end of it! Anthony, Anthony, Lard in the sauce? Whatsa-matta-fa-you? You stunots or what? Momma mia! I’m thinking this is what I would hear 😉 Anyway, I’m glad I could share this glorious recipe with you. Happy cooking! ~ Ciao, ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, I just got to tell you this is the best pasta sauce I have ever made. Then to boot, you made making the sauce a great adventure. With the Italian music, the little messages telling me to stay on top of stirring the sauce and adding oregano, and to then to see if I could toss the bay leaf over my back into the sauce. It took me two times lol. The meat balls and braciole were fantastic, along with the thin cut pork chops and sausage. The best I have ever had. I have lived with Italians my whole life, and now I can definitely say I can make a pasta sauce as good as they can. Thanks again, Wood
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Hey Woody, WooHoo! So glad you tackled the sauce. I’m happy to share with you! It really is a good sauce! I have never had anything better, but then it IS what I grew up with so nothing can really compete. Happy times! Ciao, Anthony


Anthony, I absolutely loved your recipe directions. I was laughing so hard. I’m Italian and a chef/instructor at the local college. I think I’ll share this with my students if you don’t mind. I’m always looking for new and innovative ways to encourage and inspire our chefs in training. Thanks for sharing. ~ Peggy Riccio
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Peggy, Glad you enjoyed it.. Cooking should be fun and it should be an exciting adventure, especially Italian cooking!!! and Most definitely when it’s done the way grandma used to do it 🙂 I believe in easy instructions that are not boring to read through, seems maybe I have achieved that. Well happy cooking and feel free to share with the class, make sure you tell them to “Stir” the sauce and that the quality of their cooking will be in direct proportion to the passion and love they put into their work. I try to cook with the passion and love my grandma Salerno had for cooking, it was her way of showing how much she loved us! I have many more recipes I will get up eventually. Have them all in my head, just have to remember to write down all the steps. They best way I know if inspiring and encourage the new chefs is to impart to them a passion for good food and the joy that is brings others. What I like best about good food is that it brings family and friends together. Live long, eat good, enjoy life, make friends, have fun!!! We are only here for a short while, make the best of it 🙂 Ciao, ~8-) Anthony


Dear Anthony, My family and I have enjoyed your recipes so much , brings back wonderful memories. Thank you all of us appreciate it. ~ Sincerely, Lucia
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Lucia, Glad to be of service, I know what you mean. Food (Good Italian Food Especially) has powers that bring up old memories for sure! I will be adding more recipes to the site soon, I just have to remember to write all the steps down.. I’ll be sitting there at the table with my family enjoying some nice raviolis or some nice lasagna and it hits me… Bam! I forgot to write down the recipe again! Ugh!!! Well maybe one day soon I will remember, it’s all in my head, just have to transpose it from my brain to paper and then to the internet. I need a USB port to my brain so I can just upload directly to computer from frontal lobe, auh but alas! Things would probably get lost in translation. ha! Well, have a glorious day! Ciao, ~8-) Anthony


Dear Anthony, I have never been to a web site where the recipes were as accurate and complete as my mother made them. You must be Sicilian! Your recipe for Eggplant Parmesan had the same steps as my mother’s, right down to the eggplant pressing of 5 hours. I really enjoyed your directions and you didn’t miss a step. I have forwarded your site onto many of my friends. Thanks again, ~ Marilyn
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Marilyn, Glad you enjoyed the site. Well my Wife is Sicilian (some of my mother in-laws techniques have been introduced into my family recipe) I am Italian from mid-country. My grandparents where from Salerno, Italy, that is about right in the middle of Italy and to the east (they moved to the states when in their 20’s), so the Italian my grandma cooked was a mix of Northern and Southern Italy. Sounds like you too grew up with some GOOD cooking 🙂 There are so many memories tied in with a good home-cooked meal the way your grandma used to make it. ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, I was trying to find a recipe for braciole and happened upon your site. I love it. The amount of detail you provide is great. My sister recently asked me to write down my Grandma Rose’s recipe for her, and it is difficult to write for someone to follow, it is so much easier to show them. You did a much better job than I did. I just told her about your site. My family never calls it sauce though, we always call it Gravy. We only call it sauce if it is marinara sauce. We call it Gravy if we use meat in it. I am going to try your sauce this weekend. I am always in the mood for a big pot of gravy when the weather gets cold, and here in Chicago, it just got really cold. Funny that several people mentioned Everybody loves Raymond because I saw the late night re-run last night which prompted me to look for a recipe for braciole. Even though I am 1/2 Italian, I have never made braciole. On the show, Debra mentions something about currants in hers and I have no idea what currants are doing in braciole. I personally have never heard of that. You really have to try to catch that episode. It is very funny. Can’t wait to try your recipe. I am also going to try your recipe for tarelle. I usually just by them from an Italian bakery, but they sound so good I’m going to give them a try. The Italian music really adds a lot to your site.. ~ Thanks! Mary Pat Eraci-Sullivane
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Mary, I’m glad I could help you out with your sister. I KNOW what you mean. It really is very hard work writing down every step necessary for classic family Italian meals. So many little secret details, so much work to write them down! I still have many recipes that are just in my head. I just know how much to put in of each item, hard to explain, you go by feel because that’s how grandma did it. Anyway, glad you like the site 🙂 I keep on hearing about this Everybody loves Raymond episode with the braciole. I’m going to have to watch that show some how! I don’t watch much TV at all, I think it’s all garbage. Well, maybe one day it will show up in the library 🙂 Happy Cooking! ~8-) Anthony


Hi Anthony, I’m a huge fan of your page and have been visiting off and on for well over a year salivating over the pictures on my lunch breaks usually 🙂 I’ve made the sauce and meatballs a few times (photos coming at ya soon) Anyway, I’m cooking up the braciole and sauce this weekend (definitely taking some photos!) Anyway, I had an idea for a recipe I think would be an awesome addition to your page. Do you have a good one for Coq Au Vin? ~ Max
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Lucia, Hi! So glad you are enjoying the site. I too am making the whole shebang this weekend for Easter holiday feast! I will be having 8 adults and about 12 kids! Yikes! My house will be full! I’m going to make double the sauce, meatballs and brocile. And I too plan on taking more photos for the site. I would love to get photos from you having fun with the recipe. I look forward to the pix! I have never heard of Coq Au Vin, what is it? Where are you from by the way? I am in North Carolina USA, a lovely place! Nice hearing from you Max.! Ciao, ~8-) Anthony
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Anthony, I’m in Kingwood (outskirts of Houston) Texas, I lived in Greensboro NC for a year when I was 21 and loved it. Great place. Coq Au Vin I believe originated in France but a lot of Italian people I know like it. It was actually the signature dish of Al Pacino in the movie Donnie Brasco. I make a lotta manicotti and one day I heard the quote from the movie, Al Pacino saying “Manicotti, manicotti, a hundred years they’ll be eating manicotti but wait’ll you tatse my Coq Au Vin it will melt in your mouth like holy communion”. And it looked really great what he was cooking so I hopped online and found a recipe for it, it’s like a chicken stew with wine sauce, and served with potatoes is really good. Here’s a link to the recipe I used. I still love a good manicotti though 🙂 Salut! ~ Max


Anthony, First off, I must sadly admit that I am fully Irish, but I was raised by Italians 😉 For Valentines day, I took a stab at making Chicken Parmesan with a home-made red sauce for my girlfriend, and the sauce came out horrible. I had no idea what I was doing, added too much tomato paste, not enough of anything else, and let it sit there boiling fully covered for 13 hours. I really didn’t take the cooking of this sauce seriously enough. My girlfriend is Italian and didn’t hold back on the criticism of my sauce, so I had to promise to cook the meal again and do a better job. My research led me to your website. Last night, I made the same meal, but used your recipe for the red sauce. I followed everything to a T. I have to admit, the sauce was by far the best tasting sauce I have ever had, and I’ve tasted a great deal of Italian cooking in my time (No, I’m not talking about the Olive Garden – I’m talking about 80 year old women with secret family recipes that have been around for generations). Now, my girlfriend doesn’t know that I cheated and followed someone else’s recipe, but that’s for my own safety 😉 Either way, I want to thank you a thousand times for providing this recipe on your site. It truly made for an amazing meal. Thank you, Anthony ~ Patrick – Experience Impaired Chef
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Patrick, I am glad to be of service. I have an interesting story behind the way I laid out the recipe. I am actually 50% Italian and 50% Irish. My moms parents where from Italy and my dads parents were from Ireland. So my dad is Irish and my parents got divorced when I was around 11 years old. My dad always loved my grandmothers sauce (my moms mom – the Italian side of course ;-). The problem here lies in the fact that my dad is not a great cook! Sooo, he said to me one day, you know how to make grandmas sauce? I said “sure do!”. I loved my grandmas cooking and asked a LOT of questions when she cooked, she liked that a lot! I used to sit on the counter when she cooked. So I said to my dad, ok, next time I cook the sauce I will write down every single painstaking step necessary to produce the magical sauce and I’ll throw it up on the web for ya. That’s what I did and before you know it I had about 400 visitors a day going to the recipe! WoW! People like spaghetti sauce and people wish they could cook it! It’s like only the grand mom’s knew how and they are all gone and we are left with lost children not knowing how to make a good Italian sauce.. LOL! So I made the sight a little more presentable since there were so many visitors coming to the site and started to add more recipes. Well there you have it. If an Irish dad who can’t cook at all can make a great sauce by following the recipe then I think I nailed it on the head 😉 The trick to this recipe coming out good is the “Following everything to the “T” part” of which you have done and I congratulate you. It’s hard work! Live long and eat good!! Ciao, ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, I am such a fan of Italian food, I wonder if I was Italian in my former life. 😉 I am a French Canadian who love to eat wonderful meals with a nice wine and good friends, in that order 😉 . My mouth is watering just reading about your spaghetti with meatballs recipes. Thanks for sharing, I will write back once I have tried this amazing recipes. Thanks! Alexandra
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Alexandra, Hi! There is something just wonderful about Italian food it’s hard to explain. I believe it all the LOVE that is poured into the food! It’s an event, it’s not just something you whip up, it takes real effort and time to make this food right, so as a result much love is poured into the food because in most cases you have much love for the people you are serving the food to. Anyway, good luck with the recipes! I hope everything just comes out wonderful!!! I am looking for more photos to add for my Visitors Photos section of the site located here: If your up to it I would love to have some photo’s of your culinary experience to add to the site, but no pressure 😉 Happy cooking and happy times!!!! I’m working on adding a new recipe I have been working on for some time now. Anisette Cookies. I finally nailed it! I can now make these exactly like my grandma Salerno did years ago. it was hard work because here hand written recipes where not big on measurements. You know, things like “add some flour” and “cook until done” and stuff like that. Momma Mia! The recipe for these cookies will be up soon, still working on writing every single detailed step! 🙂 Ciao, ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, Just wanted to thank you for the sauce recipe. I have made spaghetti a million times, but never made meatballs and wanted to try my hand at making them.  I found your recipe in a google search and was very impressed by it.  It was very detailed and easy to follow.  Your ingredients were very similar to my sauce recipe, but not the water and the way you cook it.  Just finished making my meatballs and they are simmering in the sauce as I type.  I actually cooked one meatball till done and tasted it and I could not believe how delicious it was!  And the sauce is to die for!  It’s just me and my hubby for dinner tonight, but I plan on making this again and sharing it with friends and family.  Thanks!
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Happy to share with you. Nice to see you tackling the meatballs. They are actually a very important part of making the sauce taste better. Also, the meatballs are even better after they have been marinating in the sauce for 2-1/2 to 3 hours. Really wonderful stuff! Next you have to tackle the sausage and then the braciole 🙂 Happy cooking, Happy times and Share the LOVE! Ciao, Anthony


Anthony, Your recipe sounds great. One question: When you have the eggplant slices in the improvised eggplant press and you let this sit for 5 hours, how do you keep the slices from turning brown? Or does this not matter? By strainer, do you mean a wire rack or a mesh strainer? When I think of a strainer I think of one of those mesh things that are shaped like a cup in various sizes. Do they make mesh strainers that are flat? I am inexperienced with eggplant but I love it. I want to try this recipe. I will try your tomato sauce recipe. I usually make my own from scratch anyway. Take care. ~ Thanks, Mitchell ~ Washington, DC
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Hi Mitchell,, Well, by strainer I mean like a calendar. Similar to what you would strain your cooked pasta in. Don’t worry about the slices turning brown. They do turn just a bit brown but not much and I you say, this does not matter because they will be covered with egg and browning in the oil. Trust me it comes out quite lovely 🙂 EnJoY! Let me know how it all turns out. Ciao, ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, How have you made out, any progress with the Tarallis? Al
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Al, Nice to hear from you again. You know funny you should bring this up. I just found EXACTLY what I was looking for in regards to the recipe for the Tarells I remember my grandmother making. I found this site here: http://tarallibaresi.com. Now that tuned me into exactly what I remember. Same size and look and it talks about the cookie being from this region “Puglia Region of Italy” I do believe that is close to where my grandmothers mom was from which is where she got her recipe. I also called these guys and talked with a very old Italian guy. Great guy! We had a nice talk. Boling is definitely the step I was missing for sure. So now armed with the proper name of this cookie which is “Taralli Baresi” I was then able to find this recipe here: http://www.recipezaar.com/121732. This is very close. Still has the yeast in the recipe too. Looks like my grandmother used beer instead of wine. But this recipe does call for the boiling of the dough before you bake. I was very excited to find this. This upcoming weekend I’m going to give this a try. I will let you know how it comes out. I’m close than I have ever been! 🙂 Ciao, ~8-) Anthony P.S. I believe I have added a new recipe since you may have last visited the site: Onion Tomato Bread, do you know of this recipe? Took me a long time to get this one right but I finally nailed it! Just like grandmas! 🙂 WooHoo!
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Al, I have FINALLY nailed down the Tatalli’s! I can FINALLY make these just like my grandma Salerno did thanksk to my cousin Gus. He lived with my grandmother for a while and he remembered some important secrets. He mailed me his recipe and it filled in a lot of gaps for me. SO excited to have these figured out now! YAY!


Hello Anthony, I was checking you site to help me remember a few choice ingredients for my cooking memories. My mother was German but her first husband was Italian, they grew up in New Jersey during the 30s, 40s and 50s so I was raised on many ethnic foods. I had the best of meals, Italian, German, Polish etc. Anyway I wanted to tell you about a few tips my mother learned after decades of cooking real Italian and European dishes. On the Lasagna she found that you do not have to boil the lasagna noodles, if you layer the dish like you said the hard noodles are much easier to work with and they cook down very tender while baking. Try it for yourself and see if you like it any better, or at least easier. You know how it is dealing with wet limpy noodles. LOL Pierogies are another one, my mother found that using the bisquick or Pillsbury refrigerated biscuit that you pop on the counter and bake, those are the perfect size to roll out with flour and add your insides for pierogies and pinch off with a fork and boil…. Thanks again Anthony, Anton
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Anton, WoW!  I am spending the beginning of this year cleaning out my in box and I just stumbled upon this email you send me 5 years ago!! Totally missed it! These are wonderful tips, thanks you! I can’t believe the Lasagna tip. Don’t boil the noodles? Really? …bake and they come out tender? I am going to have to try this out! This will be a huge time savor for sure! Anthony


Anthony, Tonight I will attempt your spaghetti recipe for my friends. I totally love the way you explain everything and I just wanted to say THANK YOU for spelling it all out so that even I (culinary challenged) can follow. I’m really looking forward to following your instructions while I’m drinking a glass of red wine with Italian music in the background. It will bring back those very fond grandma memories. CIAO ~ Valerie
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Valerie, Have Fun!!!!! Feel free to take some pic’s and send ’em over and I’ll throw them up on the site :-). The recipe is a lot of work but trust me, you’ll be rewarded for the effort. Let me know how it all comes out. ~8-) Anthony
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Hello Anthony, Great success! I started cooking the sauce on Wednesday night for my dinner on Thursday. It was really fun following your directions step by step. So much more fun than following a regular recipe! Last night everyone was so impressed that I could actually cook a real meal. Usually I order pizza or Chinese take out. For my dinner last night I had it all – Italian background music, Chianti, big checkered napkins stuck in our shirts. I had the fireplace going (it’s still cold here in the Great Lakes State of Michigan). The house smelled so good from the cooking. It was really great. I made my husband responsible for the garlic bread. At first he was kind of whining that your recipe was alot of work. I said to him follow those instructions word for word and don’t miss a step. It was worth it – he agreed! My girlfriends were reading your instructions, they were just laughing at all your special comments. After we drank all the Chianti we stuck candles in the bottles and they dripped all down the sides of the bottles – just like the good old days! It was PERFECT. The only thing missing was the camera. I will cook it all again soon and I will send pictures then. Thank you so much! ~ Valeriei
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Valerie, So glad you had fun with it. Yup, lot’s O work for sure to make the entire recipe but oh so rewarding 🙂 No pain no gain. Glad to see your husband persevered and followed those instructions. Candles in the bottles with the wax dripping down and a fire? Yup, PERFECT!!!! To bad no camera, I look forward to future pics 🙂 Happy cooking, EnJoY life, Make friends and EAT GOOD!!!! ~8-) Anthony


Hi Anthony, Could you give me some advice for my wife? She always insists on making a bolognase sauce by starting with onions/garlic as you’d expect, but by frying or more like boiling the ingredients in a small quantity of water instead of olive oil. She then adds the minced beef to the onions that was lightly boiled in the water. She is worried about the fat content and so avoids using oil. I think the oil is important to get the meat cooking at a higher temperature, which reduces fat from the meat/mince and evaporates some of it perhaps. I could be wrong but perhaps you can explain better. Can you say why olive oil is used rather than just water so I can pass this on to my wife then?? Odd question I know, but the books don’t really explain this and your experience might help more. ..Many Thanks, ~ Brian
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Brian, Well there is no question cooking with the oil adds fat. But that is where the taste is. When you start with an olive oil base that flavor stays in the sauce and cooks throughout the whole process and frying the meatballs and braciole also adds much more flavor to the sauce as well. When you boil with water their is no added taste. Sure water has not fat but it also has no flavor. Does she drain out the water real well and then put the meat in the sauce? If so she is pouring out a whole bunch of flavor with the water. Just my 2 cents. Don’t get me in trouble with your wife 😉 Ciao, ~8-) Anthony
P.S. Really good Italian food “cannot” be fat-free. It’s just not possible.


Anthony, My name is Ron Miller. I live in a little town in Southern Alberta called Lethbridge. I have been a great lover of Italian cuisine for as long as I can remember (My Father served with the Seaforth Highlanders in WWII and came up with the Canadian 8th Army through Sicily and Italy. He came away with a great love for the people, the country and the food. He passed that on the his children.) Although I have made feeble attempts at preparing Italian dishes, I have never come to understand the secrets of the lore. As you can gather from my last name, there aren’t many Italian Mama’s or Grandma’s in my family to learn from. The purpose for my e-mail is to thank you for taking the time to share some of these “secrets” with those of us who don’t know. I have prepared your wonderful recipe and it was amazing. The instructions were so thorough I felt like you were right beside me. Thank you for coming to my kitchen and helping me out. Please pass along my gratitude to your Mama & Grandma assuming they are still with you. If not, I’m sure they hear your prayers. ~ Ron
P.S. If you have any other recipes, I would love to hear about them. Thanks again
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Ron, Nice to hear from you. It’s always nice to hear from someone who took the time to work their way through the recipe and are able to enjoy the creation they made. Glad you like the sauce. It really is a lot better when you make it yourself. Here is a short little story about how that recipe made it’s way onto the net My Grandma made a wonderful sauce!! (pretty much what you made), and my Mom made the same stuff..and My mother in-law is quite Italian as well and her sauce was very similar… and I watch them all closely and asked a LOT of questions because I liked their sauce so much. So the sauce is really a culmination of two moms and 1 grandma, WoW! A great combination! Well as the years rolled on my Mom and Dad got divorced and my Dad really missed his Mother-In-laws spaghetti sauce. Auh, but I new how to make, but had never took the time to write it all down (most Italian cooks don’t write this stuff down, it’s just all in the head and the taste buds). So, one day as a favor for my Dad I decided to painstakingly write down every minute detail in a step by step fashion that anybody could follow (you see my Dad is not a chef by a long shot). So I worked it all up and threw it up on the net for my Dad, gave him the address to the page and it worked! He could now make his mother in-laws spaghetti sauce all by himself! 🙂 Well, I did not think about the page to much after that but then noticed that a LOT of people where starting to visit this page and I started receiving lots of friendly email about how happy they where that they could finally make a nice homemade spaghetti sauce like their grandma used to make etc, etc,… It really is almost a lost art. So I have had a lot of fun conversing with people about their childhood and how they used to have this wonderful spaghetti sauce that was always a mystery how grandma use to make it taste so great!!! Yes! I do plan to add many more recipes when I find the time to write it all down. They will all be in the easy to understand step by step recipe format as what’s on the site now 🙂 I find people really like this kind of recipe, easy to follow with helpful hints along the way. The next recipes I will be putting up on the site will be “Lasagna”, “Eggplant Parmesan”, and “Manicotti” and more to come.. 🙂 Thanks again for taking the time to write and let me know that the recipe turned out well for you. Enjoy Life!!! ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, First of all- Great website! I especially love the photos you added to help in the preparation. The reason why I am writing is that I plan to attempt your sauce recipe this weekend for family. I am anxious to get started! Anyway, I wanted to ask you if there is any room in the recipe for adding some sweet italian sausage to the sauce either instead of the pork or along with? Would that be overload?
Many thanks! ~ Brian – New York, NY
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Brian, No not overload at all. In fact my grandma used to always add Italian sausage to the sauce along with the braciole and meatballs. You will want to brown the sausage first since it’s pork, it will need to cook longer, so sausage goes in the sauce before the meatballs. Also, with that much meat and especially sausage you will have a lot of extra grease added to the sauce. You will notice after a while that you will get puddles of grease floating on the top of the sauce. Be sure to try to remove the grease with a spoon by pushing the round bottom of the spoon into the sauce letting the edge of the spoon ever-so-slightly dip in the grease puddles allowing the grease to go into the spoon and not the sauce. Get a coffee cup, keep it beside the pan and keep removing grease one spoonful at a time periodically throughout the cooking process. Have fun and be sure to let me know how it all came out. ~8-) Anthony


Anthony, You are awesome!  I am most appreciative of all the very hard work and detailed photos you have provided us on your website.  I want to just leave work right now, go to the Giant and hit the kitchen……oh how I wish my computer was in the kitchen. Just this morning I called my Italian friend to wish him a HB.  I asked him about his meat sauce (gravy as you Italians call it) and he told me the most important ingredient was poik (he’s got the Brooklyn and Noith Carolina accent mixed).  He said you got to squeeze the tomatoes – he said you have to used canned toms, etc.  He said he would write the recipe for me someday (yeah right).  Anyhow – I googled and your site popped right up.  Funny, but I made him a copy of YOUR recipe and mailed it to him today.  Along with the Spinach Frittata recipe. I am swimming in homegrown tom’s and trying to make sauce – but it is just so bland.  I am going to try this tonight.  I may be up until 6 am just running up and down the steps to look at the next photo on my computer. The Tomato, Garlic bread looks divine………but waaaaaaay too much work.  I would like to thank  you ever so much again for sharing all your family secrets.  I’m so glad that you don’t own the “Bush’s Baked Bean Golden Retriever.”  – they never share family secrets. Keep those recipes coming – afraid of Facebook……..so will keep checking the website for more.  I also treasured the family photos and memorabilia and geneology. Linda Mt Airy, MD
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Hi Linda, So glad you are enjoying the site. It is a labor of love for me to say the least! Happy to share the deep dark family secrets of the Italian food I grew up with. To darn delicious not to share it. I do not want these recipes and traditions lost! They must go on into the next generations. At least I know my two boys will be able to cook like grandma did and that is comforting! 🙂 I hope your Brooklyn friend liked the recipe. If his family is from south Italy then the sauce process I use should be similar. He’s right about the pork! Hope you tackled the sauce since this email. If so, how did it come out? If not… what are you waiting for? Dive in! 🙂 This weekend I am working on adding my Fettuccine recipe 🙂 YUM! Ii have many more to come. Just takes me a while for each recipe. I’m married with two teenage boys and life is a blur right now! Also going to make some Noodle and Colly-flower and olive oil this afternoon. A simple yet wonderful Italian dish! “Bush’s Baked Bean Golden Retriever keeping the secrets” e ha ha… Yep, that’s not me. I’m going to be sharing ALL the Italian cooking secrets I know! 🙂 I love getting emails and photos back from people how had no idea how to cook the big Sunday Italian meals and now can. Brightens up my day to get those emails because I know there is much love being shared in the home because of it! In the kitchen and around the table is such a great opportunity to share laughter and love that will be happy memories for a life-time! Happy cooking, Happy times and Share the LOVE! Ciao,  Anthony


 
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