Fall is Sofrito season! This tasty and (this time of the year) cheap sauce can be used in dozens of recipes for yummy cheap food.
5 pounds Red Bell Peppers(Pulled out of the discount bin--$2.49
1 pound tomatoes (fresh or canned--99c)
2 large onions(also in season--1 pound .49c
1/2 bunch of celery(not in season but usually cheap--$1.00)
5 cloves of garlic, crushed(5c)
* Chop everything down to 1/4 inch cubes.
* Saute the celery and onions in 3 Tablespoons of Olive oil (15c) for a few minutes until the onions are starting to turn brown.
* Turn down the heat and add the chopped peppers and garlic and cover the pan so that the peppers will sweat out quickly
* Continue to cook on low heat, stirring occasionally, for 2 hours (or place in the oven on 300 degrees for 2 hours.) Most of the liquid should be cooked down to syrup.
* Stir 2 tablespoons of corn starch or flour(10c) into 1/2 cup of water or vegetable broth(10c) until all the lumps are gone. Dump into the sofrito and stir well.
* Ladle the sauce into 2 quart jars, cover and allow to cool to room temp, then refrigerate for up to 1 week. (2 quarts of Safrito for $5.37--which is about 1/3 the price of buying it premade.)
* There should be sauce left in the pot. SPANISH BEANS: Add 2-3 cups of cooked beans and 1/2 cup of water. Cook until heated through. Salt & Pepper to taste and serve with crusty bread.