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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Friday, September 10, 2010

Fire Roasted Italian Pasta Sauce With Mushrooms

Roasted tomato sauce is one of my signature sauces that I make each year.  It is one of my most requested sauces.  It is a versatile sauce that can be used as a pasta sauce or as a tomato sauce for dishes like cabbage rolls or as an ingredient in dishes using tomato sauce.  Roasting on the grill over an open flame gives the sauce it's unique flavour that can't be duplicated by other cooking methods.  In addition to canning roasted tomato sauce I have been experimenting using the sauce as a base for other sauces like  fire roasted tomato basil sauce.

fire roasted Italian pasta sauce with mushrooms
Last week I processed the third hamper of the season.  The entire hamper of tomatoes was fire roasted on the grill.  As the tomatoes were roasting I formulated a plan for making a fire roasted Italian pasta sauce with mushrooms.  When creating tomato sauce recipes the guidelines are no more than 3 c of low acid vegetables to 22 c of tomatoes if processing in a BWB canner.  I process most of my tomato sauces in a pressure canner so this restriction can vary with processing time is adjusted to that of the lowest acid ingredient. 

The resulting sause was medium textured with chunkier vegetables in a smooth base.  The flavour was amazing!   Pictured is the canned fire roasted Italian pasta sauce with mushrooms.  There were 7 L jars and 4 - 500 ml jars of the roasted sauce so the canner ran twice.  I added a 500 ml and 250 ml jar of plain seasoned tomato sauce that was left over from a previous canning session that I had froze until I could add it to a part canner load. 

Method:  I placed the base notes in a large roasting pan then slow roasted adding more as necessary as they roasted down until the entire hamper of tomatoes had been used.  Once the roasting was complete I ran the sauce through the KitchenAid® food strainer.  Making the roasted tomato base takes a good part of the day so I quick chilled the sauce for refrigeration to finish the sauce for canning.  The following morning I prepared the high note vegetables and added them to the sauce that I had brought to a low boil.   Then I added the accent notes and adjusted to taste.  I let the sauce simmer about 30 minutes until it had reduced a bit then ladled into hot jars, acidified with citric acid and capped the jars.  I processed this sauce for 45 minutes at 10 lb pressure.

base notes (roasted):  tomatoes, onion, carrot, garlic, celery
high notes:  onion, green pepper, celery, mushrooms
accent notes: fresh/dried herbs (oregano, parsley, basils, thyme),  cinnamon, brown sugar

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