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    You are in: Home / Community Forums / Italian Cooking / Question about marinara sauce
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    Question about marinara sauce

    FinalLegion
    Fri Apr 05, 2013 12:33 am
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    Hey there, got a question. I'm going to be preparing an Italian marinara sauce from a recipe that requires it to simmer for about 2 hours. When my Italian grandfather made sauce, he would put his sausages and meatballs into the sauce as he let it simmer. What I don't know is exactly when he added the meat. Should I simply brown the meatballs and sausages and then add them to the sauce and allow them to simmer the whole 2 hours or is that much too long?
    Dee514
    Fri Apr 05, 2013 2:38 am
    Forum Host
    First off, Marinara sauce is meatless. icon_smile.gif

    That said, when I make my meat sauce (aka 'gravy') I start with the garlic, oil and tomatoes (canned or fresh depending on availability). Once that gets going, I start making the meatballs. Depending on what meats I am putting in, I may or may not brown them before adding them to the tomatoes/sauce. If I am only adding meatballs, I usually drop them into the simmering sauce (raw) and let them cook/poach in the sauce - depending on the size and the number of the meatballs, they will take 30-60 min to fully cook. If I am adding meatballs and sausage, I always brown the sausage before adding them to the sauce. Sometimes I will brown them in a cast iron frying pan in a bit of olive oil (like my grandmother did), as long as I'm dirtying the pan (and stove), I will brown the meatballs too. icon_smile.gif If I am adding spare ribs or country cut pork ribs to the sauce, I will brown all the meats (ribs, sausages and meatballs) in the oven/broiler before adding them to the sauce. Again, I don't simmer the meats in the sauce for more than an hour or two at the most. If the meat simmers too long, it can get over cooked/dry out. icon_confused.gif
    1Steve
    Fri Apr 05, 2013 5:16 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Like Dee said Marinara sauce is always meatless. The word means from the sea.Think of the alternative English word for a fishing dock is a Marina and Marines are part of the Navy. Italian Fisherman and sailors would make a meatless sauce, since they would not have meat available out at sea. That said, while traditionally in the USA, if you buy Marinara sauce in the grocery store, it has nothing but tomatoes, that is not necessarily so in Italy or for homemade marinara sauce. My mother makes a sauce flavored with anchovies. The anchovies actually dissolve in the tomato sauce, and all you have is the fishy flavor of them. She has always called that marinara sauce too. An internet search confirms that a tomato sauce flavored with fish, in many parts of Italy is also considered Marinara, as it still is in keeping with the derivation of the term from the sea and fish would have been obviously available to fishermen and sailors.
    Pramsan
    Fri Apr 05, 2013 10:39 am
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    It is just names, but when whole pieces of meat are cooked with a tomato sauce then removed, you have " Napoletana "

    Usually the meats are browned first, then tomato and a few water are added.
    From that point the sauce must simmer two hours or more, but you can remove the meat when you want.

    Notice different meats ( meatballs, sausage, braciole ) have different cooking times.
    letseatvaughan
    Tue Jul 09, 2013 10:41 am
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    Pramsan wrote:
    It is just names, but when whole pieces of meat are cooked with a tomato sauce then removed, you have " Napoletana "

    Usually the meats are browned first, then tomato and a few water are added.
    From that point the sauce must simmer two hours or more, but you can remove the meat when you want.

    Notice different meats ( meatballs, sausage, braciole ) have different cooking times.


    This is the way i'm used to making my sauce aka "sugo" too. I brown the meat first then add tomato and let the sauce simmer.

    A nice addition to the sauce is to add white Marsala wine to the meat while its browning. It give a nice aroma and great flavor to your sauce.
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