My mom is a great cook. She's really the reason I know how to cook. My whole life my parents were always diet conscious. Not diet as in, "I'm on a diet" but diet as in, "we eat a healthy and balanced diet."
I've spoken before that we always, always, always have a few vegetables and salads with meals, and rarely have red meat. Add to that the fact that my dad doesn't eat cheese - the true story is that when he was a kid his parents took him to a cheese factory and it stunk so bad, he's never been able to eat cheese. He is weird about it - if something is too "creamy" but doesn't actually have cheese, he still can't handle it, but he can have certain types of cheese like if ricotta is in a pastry, or the rolls at Red Lobster. Until he KNEW that there was cheese in them, he would gobble them up. Now he knows and he can't do it anymore.
What was I talking about? Oh yeah, my dad doesn't eat cheese, so we never had that added fat in our diets. Now I am a cheese lover and I have found that if I keep good quality fatty cheeses, I can satisfy a craving with one bite and move on.
What was I talking about..????? Oh yeah, healthy cooking....mom's "meat" sauce. Sheesh, sorry for the digression!
Well, mom would always make these healthy dishes. Before I went to college she decided I should know how to make her sauce, and only then did I realize it was lean ground turkey, and not beef! I have since added a couple ingredients to this recipe that I think make it even meatier! Red wine and worcester sauce. The next time I make it, I am going to soak some dehydrated shitakes, and then grind them up in my food processor and add them in. I have heard this gives it great meaty flavor, without making it taste like mushrooms actually!
Okay so this recipe was made back in Alabama at Sarah's house (Charlie's sister).
-about 2-2.5 pounds of lean or extra lean (I used a combination) ground turkey.
*note: lean is 97% fat free, extra lean is 99% fat free. You can use 93% fat free if you want but I have really found that the lean and extra lean work great.*
-olive oil (regular vegetable oil is fine for this recipe though)
-1 large onion, or 2 small onions
-salt and pepper to season
-1 big jar of tomato sauce
-1/3 cup red wine
-1.5 tbs worcester sauce
-1 tbs ketchup
1. Chop your onion and sautee it on medium heat. Add salt to cover it. Then add garlic.
2. Once your onion has softened significantly (about 5 minutes), add the turkey. Break up the turkey with a wooden spoon so it cooks up ground.
*Most recipes say to make sure that the turkey cooks all the way through before adding sauce. I have NEVER done it like this. I cook this for so long to let the flavors meld that I know the turkey is cooked through.*
3. Add the worcester sauce, then the jar of tomato sauce right after all the turkey is broken up, mix it all in together.
4. Add ketchup and wine. Keep stirring until it all is incorporated well together.
5. Cook it for about an hour on low, mixing every so often.
I forgot to take a picture of the final product. I think we ate it all!
Serve over pasta, by itself, with beans, or however you want! In college I used to make big batches and freeze them.