Some say leftovers, others say ‘repurpose’ that great meal into something delicious. We had a great and simple dinner the other night with beef ribs roasted with salt and pepper. Sometimes less is more when it comes to a great cut of meat. For me, the best was yet to come as I looked at the leftover ribs and of course immediately thought sauce. Well, I thought ‘gravy’, but my wife has won the battle over the term used to described the tomato based Italian delicacy. Here’s what I made:

  • Heat olive oil over low heat on the stove top.
  • Add chopped onions and about half the amount of chopped celery.
  • If you have carrots, you can chop them and add them as well.
  • I had a half of a cherry pepper which I also added.
  • Add rosemary, thyme, oregano, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to the mix.
  • Low heat and cook until you can see through the onions.
  • Add a few cloves of chopped garlic. Cook for about a minute – don’t burn it!
  • Deglaze the pan with white wine, about a glass full, and bring the mix back to a boil.
  • Add two cans of crushed tomatoes and a small can of tomato puree or sauce.
  • Bring it to a low simmer, a few bubbles popping up, and let it go for at least 3-4 hours. Make sure you stir every 20-30 minutes.
Spadea's homemade red sauce

As far as the leftover ribs and this goes for Italian sausage as well:

  • I put the meat under the broiler and get the fat to crisp a little.
  • Add it to the pot.
  • Cover the ribs with the sauce and let it simmer all day.

You know it’s done when you can pull the beef bones out as the meat slips off into the sauce. Always check when you serve as some bones break and may leave a little behind.

It’s easy to cook something delicious in your kitchen. It’s cheaper than going out and the process of cooking may be the best therapy for you in this crazy time!

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The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.

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