This is definitely not the ragu from your supermarket shelves! It’s a great meal to transition hard core meat eaters into a meatless night. And, of course, serve to all your omnivore friends. (I define omnivore as a person who eats tofu and meat.)
If you are watching your fat or calorie intake it’s the perfect topping for pasta or grilled polenta. You can just buy a tube of polenta and slice it, then crisp it in the oven or on a grill.
You do need to cook the veggie sausage ahead of time, so why not go ahead sauté the onions too? It does take more time, but trust me it’s worth it.
This recipe makes enough for a dinner party and still have leftovers. The best thing is that it freezes great. You can freeze in ice cube trays to have a quick cooking single serving size. Once the cubes freeze, just pop them out into a ziplock bag.
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- 1 onion, minced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 package Gimme Lean Sausage
- 2- 28 oz cans of organic crushed tomatoes
- 16 oz crimini mushrooms, chopped
- 2 large portabella mushrooms, chopped
- 2 Tb fresh basil (or 2 frozen cubes from Trader Joe's)
- Fresh ground pepper to taste
- 1 Tbl. balsamic vinegar
- 2 – 3 Tbl. red wine or port wine
- The night before: Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add onions and sauté until translucent. In the same skillet that you cooked the onions, now cook the package of Gimme Lean. Chop it with a large spatula as you cook to break it up into sausage crumbles. It will be fairly sticky until it browns. It's less mess to slice it into patties first and break apart after you flip them.
- In the morning: Combine all the ingredients (except for wine) in your slow cooker and cook all day on low. Add water if it needs it, extra seasoning and the wine about 10 - 15 minutes before serving.