Sunday, 17 March 2013

Bolognaise and Toast

In the days when the Pizza Hut back home still had unlimited pizza buffet available, my father would often help himself to the bolognaise sauce and have it with the thin garlic toast, saying that it was probably the best way of getting maximum value out of the buffet. He had a point: by avoiding the deep pan pizzas which filled you quickly with heavy dough and cheap smoked meat (like ham or pepperoni), you get to the highest value ingredient in the buffet other than salad, namely, the minced beef.

I have one last serving of Basics frozen mince to get through, after which I am once again left to my own devices. The idea for making a pasta sauce came about as I noticed that I have not reviewed the Basics Tomato Soup on this blog, and was curious as to how effective it was as a substitute for the Basics chopped tomatoes, which is about 7p more expensive. Knowing how well it can substitute may also be useful to know when caught in a pinch.

I do not recall ever having tinned soup for my meals, though I would imagine it has kept many a university student in the UK alive. The most I remember is my friend having tomato soup and roll in a pub when I visited her.

The smell of browning Basics frozen mince in the kitchen is starting to take its toll on me and my flatmates, so I was rather grateful to learn from a friend of mine at church this morning that using wine in cooking would help reduce strong smells from cooking.

Once the mince has been browned and Basics white wine has been added, add the Basics tomato soup and herb mix. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a low simmer. Skim off all the fat while waiting for the whole thing to reduce by about half its volume.

Transfer to bowl. Sprinkle Basics Grated Hard Cheese and serve with toasted Basics Sliced White Bread.

This turned out surprisingly well, and would serve as an excellent example of rustling up a pasta sauce without actually having any pasta sauce or canned tomatoes available. The tartness of the tomato soup can still be felt, but with clever use of herbs and other seasoning it shold be easily masked.

Creamed Tomato Soup: £0.24, 1 serving
+£0.35 for More variety, Be Good To Yourself

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