NEWFOUNDLAND SAUSAGE COMPANY SUNDAY GRAVY

Like any stew or soup, this is best made in advance. Make it Saturday, or Sunday morning, and let it cool for aT LEAST A few hours before reheating and preparing the pasta. if you’d like to skip the meat, The vegan version is also delicious, Trust me. -JRS

PASTA BUYING TIP: The best dried pastas come from Italy and are extruded through bronze dies, which gives them a noticeably rougher texture – this helps the sauce bind to the surface of the noodle. The major grocery stores have house-brand versions of this pasta; they’re worth the added expense. 

Newfoundland Sausage Company Sunday Gravy

CLICK HERE FOR VEGAN VERSION

INGREDIENTS

– 1 package dried pasta, e.g. rigatoni (see note above)
– 3-4 hot Italian sausages from the Newfoundland Sausage Company (use anybody else’s and you’re dead to me)
Olive oil
1 medium onion, diced finely
8-10 cloves garlic, sliced or minced
– Tomato paste (the tube is best; canned is fine)
– Red wine (the cheapest you can find, don’t worry about it)
1 bottle strained tomatoes (passata)
– Fresh herbs, e.g. bay leaf, thyme, basil, oregano – you can use dry, but go easy, or your sauce can end up tasting like potpourri.
– Salt and pepper to taste. 

Add some olive oil to a sauce-pot over medium heat. Gently brown the sausages on both sides. You may need to drain off some fat; reserve. 

Remove sausages. To the oil add the onion and garlic and a slight pinch of salt. Sauté for a few minutes until translucent.

Add two heaping tablespoons of tomato paste and cook out for a minute or two, until the paste turns a rusty red in colour. Pour in a glass of red wine, bring up the heat a little, and scrape off any brown bits from the bottom of the pot – this is known as “deglazing”.

Let the alcohol cook off for four or five minutes and then add the strained tomatoes and herbs. Pour two cups of water into the strained tomato bottle, put the cap on, shake and add to the sauce. Return the sausages to the pot.

Simmer gently for forty-five minutes or an hour. Taste (see my article on seasoning here) and season with salt and pepper – the sauce may need sugar if it’s very acidic, or more oil if it feels a little thin on the palate.

If you have time, let cool completely for several hours. 

FINISH

Bring about two litres of water to a boil and toss in about 1/8 cup of salt. You want very salty water, as this is the only way to season your pasta.

In the meantime, reheat sauce. When hot, remove sausages and set aside. 

Cook pasta according to directions, less two minutes – i.e. if the package says 14, set a timer for 12. After ten minutes or so, scoop up two cups of pasta water and pour into the sauce. 

Drain pasta, return to same pot. Pour sauce over pasta and stir through. If you have fresh basil, tear up four or five leaves and add. Let pasta sit, off heat, for 15-20 minutes, stirring here and there.

Cut up sausages and serve on the side with pasta. 

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VEGAN SUNDAY GRAVY

INGREDIENTS

– 1 package dried pasta, e.g. rigatoni (see note above)
– 1 package Gusta wheat sausages, Española flavour
Olive oil
1 medium onion, diced finely
8-10 cloves garlic, sliced or minced
– Chili flakes
– Balsamic vinegar
– Red wine (the cheapest you can find, don’t worry about it)
1 bottle strained tomatoes (passata)
Tomato paste (the tube is best; canned is fine)
– Sugar
– Fresh herbs, e.g. bay leaf, thyme, basil, oregano – you can use dry, but go easy, or your sauce can end up tasting like potpourri.
– Salt and pepper to taste. 

Add about 1/4 cup of olive oil to a sauce-pot over medium heat. Brown sausages carefully on all sides (note: they stick easily). Remove sausages and set aside.

Add onion, garlic and chili flakes and sauté for a few minutes until translucent. Put in two heaping tablespoons tomato paste and one tablespoon balsamic. Cook off for a minute or two until the paste is a rusty red in colour and the harsh smell of the vinegar has burned off.

Pour in a glass of wine. Simmer for a few minutes until the alcohol has cooked off. Add tomatoes, sugar and herbs. Cut sausages into thick slices and return to pot.

Let cook gently over medium or low heat for thirty or forty-five minutes. Taste and season with plenty of salt and some pepper.

FINISH

Bring about two litres of water to a boil and toss in about 1/8 cup of salt. You want very salty water, as this is the only way to season your pasta.

In the meantime, reheat sauce. 

Cook pasta according to directions, less two minutes – i.e. if the package says 14, set a timer for 12. After ten minutes or so, scoop up two cups of pasta water and pour into the sauce. 

Drain pasta, return to same pot. Pour sauce over pasta and stir through. If you have fresh basil, tear up four or five leaves and add. Let pasta sit, off heat, for 15-20 minutes, stirring here and there.

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