Thursday, August 02, 2007


An oven-simmered tomato sauce, enriched with red wine, stirred into fresh penne and sliced sausages - just the thing for an autumnal sort of summer day. Eat with fresh bread.

1 punnet plum tomatoes (about 500g)
1 onion, sliced
1tsp olive oil
175ml red wine (a rich one like Shiraz)
175ml vegetable stock
4 vegetarian sausages - I like Cauldron's Lincolnshire
2 handfuls penne
Parmesan and fresh bread, to serve

Start a few hours before tea, or the night before. In an ovenproof casserole, soften the onion in the oil very slowly, until translucent. Add the tomatoes, crush with a wooden spoon, then add the lid and leave on a low heat for a few more minutes. Finally tip in the wine and stock, bring to a bubble, then replace the lid. Now you can either leave it on the hob on the lowest heat, or put the casserole into the oven at about 120 deg for anything up to two hours. Either way, keep checking: you want to slowly achieve a thick, reduced sauce with onion pieces that melt into the goo.
You can keep this aside now - until ready to eat. At which point, grill the sausages, then slice roughly, and add to the pan, returning it to a gentle heat. Bring another pan of water to the boil and throw in the penne, then cook for 10 minutes. Finally combine the drained pasta with the sauce, stir well, and serve onto warm plates.

Garnish generously with freshly grated parmesan.