Special Sauce

A mish-mash of twisted thoughts from a fevered ego. Updated when the spirit moves me, contents vary and may have settled during shipping. Do not open towards eyes. Caution: Ingestion of Special Sauce may cause hair loss, halitosis, and a burning sensation while urinating.


*This* Is the Man I Love.

Yes. Really.

This is what happens when hospital property is misappropriated. Thank you, Size 8 Biogel gloves, for providing an entire weekend's worth of amusement.

Our Monkey Love Weekend was actually ridiculously sweet and fun. For those with strong stomachs read on to hear what happened. Everyone else- tune in tomorrow, I'll have more stuff then... Heh.

So Friday night I went over before he got home from work (and thank goodness his neighbors aren't nosy like my mom, as it took me 4 tries to get the garage door to close- I couldn't get out of the way of the sensors in time. Then I figured out I could have closed it from the back door. Oh well.) Anyway. I get there, and the #1 song that reminds me of him is playing. He set his computer up to repeat it. Was very sweet.

Saturday we slept in, I made the hummus, and some tasty greek chicken sandwiches, took a nice drive (during which I got car sick. Go figure.) and when we got back, I got my Monkey Love Day gift. A nearly 2 hour long massage, on the massage table, relaxing music, candlelight, and all. It was *awesome*. Ma and Pa turned up their noses at this ("What? Nothing Tangible?") but I think it was exceptionally sweet, and it was exceptionally relaxing. (And one of the many perks of dating a massage therapist. Seriously.)

Today we slept in again, and made the infamous Mad Elf Cake Which is, in a word, BANGIN'. Speaking of bangin', I also made the best, simplest, fastest marinara sauce ever. The recipe is in the April issue of Cooks Illustrated, but because I like y'all, it's here for you too:

(probably not as succint as they are)

2 28 ounce cans of WHOLE tomatoes, packed in juice (NOT packed in puree, yes, they must be whole.)
1 medium onion, smallish-mediumish dice
2-3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed through the garlic press
a teaspoon or so of oregano
2 tablespoons of Olive Oil
2 1/2 cups of reserved tomato juice
1/3 cup of dry red wine OR a tablespoon or so of balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons or so basil, fresh, minced

Salt, Pepper, Sugar, and another tablespoon of olive oil to finish

Break up and drain the juice off of the tomatoes (save 2.5 cups, and you could use the rest for rice or something else later). You can let them sit in the colander for a little while to drain fully, or if you're impatient like me, you can squeeze them in your hands to get the extra liquid out- not bone dry, but not sopping either. In the meantime- heat up a 5 quart not non-stick saucepan, or a nice big frying/saute pan. Put in your olive oil and saute the onions, when they're soft, add the garlic and oregano, stirring until the garlic smells good. (maybe 30 seconds?)

When the garlic smells good, put in all the drained tomatoes except for 3/4 cup (you'll put these in at the very end of cooking) and cook over medium-high heat, stirring about every minute or so- until the tomatoes give up most of their liquid, and begin to form a nice brown fond on the bottom of the pan (about 8-10 minutes). When that happens, either add your wine (if using) and cook for a minute or so- till thick, or add in the reserved tomato juice, scraping the bottom of the pan to get all the good bits up. Reduce the heat to a simmer, and let the whole shebang cook for about 10 minutes (if that) till the sauce thickens. When it's thick, take the sauce off the heat, add the uncooked tomatoes, and puree the whole thing with a stick blender until it's as smooth as you like.

To finish the sauce, add the fresh basil, salt, pepper, and sugar. This is where I added the balsamic vinegar, because I didn't use the wine. This sauce? ROCKS it. And it's inexpensive, and takes less than an hour to put together. IT whips the pants off any other sauce. Yay.

Anyway, my weekend was swell, and I couldn't have asked for a nicer way to spend Monkey Love Weekend. Hope yours was great too.


Blogger Fiber said...

Since I know you're waiting for this from me:



10:39 PM  
Blogger Special Sauce said...

What- was it the tomato sauce?


Thank you, Fiber, as I was indeed waiting for you to gag. My work here is done. Heh. :)

6:41 AM  
Anonymous Mark said...

Sounds good. I actually make a very similar sauce, but with a few red-pepper flakes tossed in with the garlic... adds a touch of heat, but not so much as to make anyone (except, apparently fiber) gag.

12:12 PM  
Blogger Special Sauce said...

Thanks Mark! I like the idea of the red pepper flakes. I'm thinking I might throw some mushrooms in the next time too- put them in with the onions, and let them go till they're not soggy- then add the tomatoes.

Heh, and don't mind Fiber. She gags every time I mention the guy with the rubber glove on his head.

5:29 PM  
Blogger Memphis Word Nerd said...

Yummy! I have been making that marinara sauce for years; it's actually a reprint. I love that recipe!

Way to go on the Monkey Love. We all need to go ape from time to time. :-)

Oh, and for the record? These word verifications are getting increasingly long and aggravating. Don't they know that I'm getting oldish and my vision is going?

12:35 AM  
Blogger Steph said...

a glove?
oh the many, many thoughts going thru my head......

2:18 AM  

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