Monday, July 13, 2009

Okie-Italiano Pasta Sauce - a recipe

Commercial coal-bearing sediments are located at or near the earth’s surface in many parts of eastern Oklahoma. Coal, first mined in Oklahoma in 1873, resulted in miners from many European nations immigrating to Oklahoma. They brought their culture and cuisine with them.

These German, Italian and eastern European immigrants adapted their culture and cuisine to the lifestyle of eastern Oklahoma, its people and its food sources. They learned how to brew Choc (short for Choctaw) beer from the Indians, and adapted their native cuisine to fruits, vegetables, etc. grown in Oklahoma.

The largest Italian population west of the Mississippi once resided in western Arkansas, eastern Oklahoma, and many wonderful restaurants such as Venetian Inn, Mary Meister’s, Pete’s Place, Isle of Capri and Roseanna’s still serve authentic Arkansas/Oklahoma-influenced Italian fare. Here is an Italian pasta sauce recipe with an eastern Oklahoma/western Arkansas flare.

v 28 oz whole tomatoes
v 12 oz tomato paste
v 1 med onion, chopped
v 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
v ¼ tsp black pepper
v ½ tsp thyme
v 1 tbsp parsley
v 1 tbsp oregano
v 1 ½ c Arkansas red wine (yes, grown from native grapes)
v 2 tsp salt
v 1 tsp sugar
v 1 tbsp olive oil
v ½ c chopped green pepper
v ½ c mushrooms

Use a 6-quart stew pot to sauté onion and green pepper in olive oil. When onion is soft and clear, add remaining ingredients, except the mushrooms. Stir well. Simmer over medium-low heat for at least an hour (longer is preferable). Add mushrooms 15 minutes before turning off heat. Buon appetito, pardner!


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