9.06.2012

It's Gravy.....Not Sauce!

My beautiful girlfriend has asked me to share with you something very close to me- the Serpico family recipe.  So this is a recipe that I always said I would never share with the world.  As I got older my perspective changed and I decided that I would rather have people enjoy it then just keep it for myself.  This has been passed down through the generations and each time it is changed slightly.  For everyone that doesn’t know; its GRAVY not SAUCE!!  Some Italians might disagree (the debate between sauce and gravy goes back for years) but in my family, gravy is made with meat and as you will see there is plenty of meat.  
So here it is…Enjoy!! 
First you start with Tutto Rosso tomato puree and tomato paste.
The key is to have good Hot Italian Sausage and quality meats.  All the flavor is coming from the meat so I recommend Hatfield -- but if you can’t find Hatfield, Premio is a great second option.  We like to cook sausage, pork and Braciole (you can fill the Braciole with anything you want but this time we emptied the sausage from the skin and added cheese and spices.)  
This is a braciole. For those of you who don't know what Braciole is, it is a cut of Braciole steak (thin cut of beef) filled with really whatever you want, sausage, cheeses etc) wrapped up like shown above, and slow cooked in the sauce gravy. Again, this pot of gravy is heavy on the meat, and is clearly not vegetarian friendly!
You first cook all the meat while you get the Gravy going.  Add anything you like and most importantly, don’t measure a thing!!  
Put in what you feel-cooking is a lot about feeling and can be a great bonding/sensual experience with your partner.   Try a splash of wine, a little extra garlic, and of course the usual spices such as oregano, basil, red pepper flakes. But really whatever sounds good to you and your palette. 
When the meat is about 2/3 done, spread the tomato paste on the meat and continue to cook.  
Adding the tomato paste is an ugly but very necessary step!
Look at this mess ; )
I have to note, that when Steph and I make gravy, the process becomes very, very messy -- and I always say that if it's not messy, you're not doing it right! Italian cooking and food in my opinion is all about passion. So put that passion into your cooking and you will see it makes a difference in the flavor. 
Take the meat off and transfer it into the sauce to finish cooking over a 4-6 hour period.  
This is a lot of fun because once the gravy is on the stove; the slow cooking fills your home with a seductive smell and assists in building your appetite so when you finally cook the macaroni and garlic bread-everybody is starving!! 
Voila!
We like to make this on the weekends (for example, Sundays while watching football are great days to devote the time to making gravy) and the nice thing about having a pot of gravy is that you have food to eat throughout the week.
We like to eat this pasta dish with a spinach and spring mix salad made with Steph's homemade dressing that I like to call "bomb" dressing, because it's the bomb! In reality, all it is is olive oil, balsamic vinegar and a mix of Italian spices.
Either way, I don't care - her dressing is bomb!
Feel free to ask questions and I will be happy to help-good luck and enjoy!!
Mangia!

-D

23 comments:

  1. Look at him go! I wish my Italian side was better with passing down the recipes. This looks delicious!
    I also laughed out loud when I read "the bomb". I've been saying it all the time lately and I think Dean hates it. Bringin' it back, one blog at a time...hahha

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    1. haha he is a great cook! and in my opinion the phrase "the bomb" never went out of style!!

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    2. He will come around. Keep at him!! Lets get together soon.

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    3. I agree! Dean won't comment-but he did say that he would like some gravy soon!

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  2. wow this looks pretty yummy :) meat galore x

    A Scholar Life

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    1. Thanks for the comments Megan. And yes, it is not for the faint of heart and perfect for meat lovers!

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  3. Great, now I want italian at 8am.

    Lindsay
    LindsayJEveryday,blogspot.com

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    1. haha weird to most of us -- but to D, he would totally eat a plate of pasta for breakfast!!

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    2. Thanks for the comment Lindsay. I am a true believer that you crave certain foods for a reason-if you want Italian at 8am, go for it!! I do it all the time-haha.

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  4. this looks so good, and easy enough!

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    1. Thanks for the comments Whitney - and its definitely very easy to make -- and oh so good!!

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    2. It tastes good, its fun, and you'll come back for seconds. Oh and about the gravy-haha-jk.

      If you try it an have questions just let us know and we'll be happy to help!!! Enjoy!!

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  5. I don't even eat a ton of meat and this looks delicious!
    xo Dina

    http://www.sweetestsomethings.com

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    1. even if you're not crazy about the meat (which I don;t even eat sausage) the sauce I mean gravy, alone is so delicious you don't even need the meat!

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    2. Dina you have to get on board. At least give it a try and if you do let me know what your thoughts are. The best part is you can freeze it and it makes for a quick dinner in a seconds notice. Enjoy!!

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  6. Oh my that looks yummy and I'm sure it tastes great too!

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  7. This looks really yummy. I am gonna need to find this tomato puree in my local grocery store...do you know if it has sugar in it? I've never heard of that cut of beef either...gonna need to chat with the butcher.

    Alice
    www.happinessatmidlife.com

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    1. You can use any puree but this is the best available at the local store for us. You can add some sugar to get rid of the acidity if needed. Also, if you ask the butcher he will be able to get you the cut of meat you need and be sure to get the twine as well so it can be tied. Let me know if you have any other questions and I promise you that after the first time it becomes very easy. Good luck!!!

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  8. I wish I didn't open this. I'm starving. Really.

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    1. Well lets start cooking!!! If you have any questions, please let me know and I'll be happy the help you.

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  9. Oh my goodness this looks amazing!

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    1. It tastes even better!! Let us know if you have any questions!! Enjoy!!

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  10. sundays are def made for cooking!
    although i call it sauce bc i'm northern italian ;)

    xoxo, jillian

    http://just-jillian.blogspot.com

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I love getting and reading all your comments and respond to most of them when I can. Love hearing from you all! xo

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