Stupid easy red sauce

Dumb name, but I made it up three seconds ago. You may call it whatever you want. Name it something fancy for your next dinner party, just don’t tell them it’s made of beer.

What?

Yes.

Domestic beer, in fact.

Here it is:

1 yellow onion

Avocado oil or another that withstands high heat

1 can tomato paste

1 can light beer, a cheap Pilsner preferred, but whatever you have in the fridge leftover from your dad’s visit a couple months ago.

Olive oil, butter, reserved bacon fat or all 3.

Sea salt

Italian spices, or oregano, thyme & dried basil

Garlic powder

Instructions: First, freak out that you don’t have any pizza sauce or pasta sauce anywhere in the house. Then gather up a bunch of random objects from the fridge and pantry. Preferably, these should be food items.

1. Heat up a couple tablespoons of the avocado oil and some Italian herbs in a medium pot on medium heat. Medium is best when you’re like me and making things up as you go along. Dice your onion and toss it in the hot oil. Cook it down while stirring. Add a little sea salt & butter. Keep cooking and stirring. If it gets scorched, de-glaze the pot with a couple tablespoons of the beer. Keep going until it looks deep golden brown and almost beyond caramelized and nearing total disintegration.

2. Add the tomato paste and stir until combined. Add about 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder or more if that’s your jam. Add a little more salt and a little bacon fat. Stir.

3. Once combined, start slowly pouring in the rest of the beer while you keep stirring. SLOWLY, just until you get the consistency you want in a sauce.

4. Taste it. Add whatever it needs. It might need more salt or fat. If it’s too salty, add a little butter. Extra veg like peppers and mushrooms work too. If it’s too blah, add some bacon fat and a dash of something hot like chipotle powder.

5. Cover and turn heat down to low and let simmer about 10 minutes.

This is good, you guys. Stupid good.

Save what’s left of the beer because your spouse is about to text you about his car getting hit in the parking lot at work.

REALLY? Yes, really. Oprah take the wheel, because I am done here.

You can save the sauce to use with whatever you want, or do what I did.

I had this epically sized eggplant from my friend and we needed to do a parmigiana situation with it.

My fella does the world’s most amazing thing with yellow curry and rice and eggplant. I mean it; it’s sweet and spicy and savory and all kinds of fantastic. But if we serve yellow curry with eggplant once again to our children this month, they will be heading down the street with their tiny little suitcases rolling along behind them, looking for anyone serving chicken nuggets. If they end up at your house, don’t let their sad faces trick you. They eat plenty of garbage food on the regular.

So on the day I made this Stupid Easy Red Sauce, I sliced up the giant eggplant into round discs and brushed them with avocado oil, sprinkled them with regular table salt (I have to compromise on my sea salt sometimes, because fella thinks we’re not getting enough iodine. He was born in 1965 and remembers when the dinosaurs ate all the seaweed and we were all in danger of … not being … iodized … or … something.)

Then I baked the eggplant for 12 minute on each side. When they were tender, I layered them in a 9×13 glass dish with the red sauce and some shredded mozzarella. You could also add in a spinach layer for extra greens. Do whatever you want with your baked eggplant parm layers, just make sure you begin by brushing the bottom of the glass dish with the sauce, and end with a layer cheese on top.

Then bake for about 30 min at 350 or until the cheese is melted.

Really, you can make up just about anything for dinner if you have an onion, butter and leftover beer. And if you’re one of those people who don’t like onions, then all I can say is the ones you’ve been served have not been caramelized enough.

Happy Wednesday; I wish you lots of leftover crap beer to inspire you!

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