L’Forkette returned from a trip to ye olde grocery shoppe with meatless meatballs from that company Beyond Meat (they’re beyond meat, y’know?), and we’ve just gotta say—they were crazy good. Like, we’ve had the burgers (truth be told, we went a little nuts on them when they first appeared and we’re kind of over it) and we’ve had the breakfast sausage and we even tried the thing of just, like, ground “meat,” but this one’s a winner. For you see, L’Forkette also snagged some baguettes, a little bit o’ the old mozzarella and some tomato sauce, and baby, we had a sub going. We tell you this because we think it would benefit vegetarians who so miss the meaty meatballs of yesteryear. Seriously, though, it’s in the regular rotation now.

This got us in the mood to call up Grand Mére de la Fourche and ask her about her red sauce recipe. We know y’all liked when we mentioned things our friend Ryan’s grandma has said and a few have even said they appreciate some recipes.

Anyway, though, our own grandmother is a TERRIBLE cook...like, so terrible. And she knows it. Once she made us these lamb chops when we were a kid, and the experience was seriously like eating an old boot. Or, like, this other time, she made us a minestrone “soup,” which we put in quotes because it mainly was just celery in brown water, and we still don’t know why the water was brown. But, yo, she makes a good red sauce. However, since she’s of the generation that for some reason doesn’t like to share recipes for whatever absurd reason, she wouldn’t give us her “secret ingredient.” We were even like, “C’mon—you’ll be dead soon, you old bag!” but then just seemed to piss her off more. Anyway, here’s what we got out of her, with quotes from g-ma...add whatever you want (or don’t):

sauce rouge de la grand-mère de la fourchette

YOU’LL NEED:

The equivalent of 5 cups’ worth of chopped tomatoes

“I grow mine because it’s easy and because I’m not paying for fucking tomatoes—I grew up on a farm! They’re red, that’s all I know. Maybe if there are some kind of sweet ones? Yeah, try to find sweeter ones.”

1 cup tomato paste stirred with 3/4 cup of water

“I know it’s weird to add sauce to sauce, or anyway, I always thought it was funny, but this’ll make a sauce kind of thing that you’ll add in at some point.”

1 chopped onion

“I chop some of it finely, I also leave some chunks. Eyeball it. You’ll be fine.”

An entire clove of garlic, maybe more

“I saw you once wrote there can never be too much garlic, and I agree—chop it as small as you can. I sometimes just get a jar of pre-minced garlic and spoon it on in there.”

Some oregano

“I’ve never measured, but it’s not a lot...let’s say it’s 1 and 1/2 teaspoon. Maybe 2? Do you like oregano? You do? OK. Maybe go with 2 and if it’s too much, do less next time.”

2 cups of red wine

“This is also for sipping, honestly. You’ll want it dry.”

Salt and pepper to taste, and a little bit of cinnamon

“Cinnamon’s good in everything. Maybe not in something like eggs, but in the case of the sauce, you don’t need a whole lot, maybe just a half a teaspoon. Or maybe even a quarter. Tell you what, start with a quarter, if you absolutely can’t taste it, add another quarter.”

Some olive oil

“You know, we didn’t have specific measuring spoons and such on the farm, but just have enough on hand to heat up in a pan.”

NOW COOK:

  • “Do you have a pan with decently high sides? You should. Get one of those, and then use it to heat olive oil on medium, adding in garlic and onion and just kind of cook those up and stir them until they almost look clear.”
  • “Add your tomatoes and oregano, then cover and let it simmer on low-ish heat for about 20-25 minutes.”
  • “Add the rest of the stuff and stir it up real good. Add the wine last so you can keep sipping it.”
  • “That’s pretty much it. And no, I will not tell you the secret ingredients.”

So there you have it. We did a little research, and we think the secret ingredient might be allspice, but we also think she could be full of shit about a secret ingredient anyway. Either way, We hope this helps y’all, and if you want to toss some Beyond meatballs in there, too, it wouldn’t hurt. Then throw it on a baguette with some mozz. Is good. Is real good. Is so good, you’ll be like “Is good!”

Anyway, if you have some red sauce or meatball ideas that aren’t like, “EXCUSE ME, I’VE MADE RED SAUCE DIFFERENTLY AND AM MAD NOW!” let us know!

Also

-Arroyo Vino continues its run of takeout that pairs well with movies, and this week’s cinematic powerhouse is none other than Hidden Figures, the gripping tale of the Black women who worked within NASA and made the lunar landing a reality (Octavia Spencer is easily in our Top 10 actors of all time, too). Simply call up the restaurant (983-2100) and place your order (this week’s meal includes octopus, shrimp and scallop ceviche, chicken and spinach enchiladas, black beans and rice plus tres leches for dessert (oh. em. gee.)—plus wine, all for $85. Then you go home and eat it while you stream the movie from wherever it is streamable. Word. Order ASAP, because the dinner comes on Saturday (that’s the 16th and is only two days from now!)

-Chef Hue-Chan Karels is all but moved into her new spot at 227 Don Gaspar (in the former Palacio II), and you can and should get down with the concept of amazing food made by an amazing chef that tastes amazing (the food, we mean—don’t eat people!). Anyway, visit the website to learn more.

-Speaking of Palacio, owners Maria and Damian Muñoz (whom SFR staffers miss badly since we moved out of downtown a mere block from the Palace Ave. eatery) recently bought up some prime real estate right next to their current location, and that means expansion. Get the fries. Get a brekkie b. Get a turkey sandwich, but add avocado and then, like, the fries. And then maybe stuff all those things inside the brekkie b. Palacio forever!!!

-Heritage Inspirations, which we’ve been told is “New Mexico’s premier travel company,” has developed and is launching new culinary tours for 2021. These apparently include virtual tours and cooking lessons and run $20 a pop. Coming up soon? How to make beans, how to make rolled enchiladas, drinking choco and more!

-Don’t forget about the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market, friends. Just saying.

Dedicated to Fork Fan Brian R. who emailed to say he had an amazing Christmas meal, but that there was something green and confusing on his plate—which he still cannot identify.

More Tidbits

-That fake-ass shaman loser who was part of the seditious run on the Capitol on Jan. 6 has been arrested—and reportedly won’t eat anything in prison because it’s not organic. Allow us to say “A-boo-hoo-hoo...hoo-hoooooo-hoooo...a-boo-a-boo-hoo-hoo-hoo-hoooooooo.” Get real, vitamin-breath!

-Meanwhile, because there are still threats of violence and who knows what else from the very people who’ve spent the last four years telling us to get over Trump being president because that’s how voting works, many Washington, DC restaurants are closing down through the upcoming inauguration. Only a few more days, buds. Hang tough.

-Cheers to Fork Favorite Caitlin R. who sent us this handy link for eatin’ ants. Now, before you send us an email about how we’re childish and immature, or how eating bugs is gross, read this National Geographic  piece. READ IT!!! Now maybe challenge your own narrow worldview, robots, jeeze!

-Colorado’s Flatirons Food Film Festival (we hear it’s like the Sundance of food movies) is going virtual this year, and there’s still plenty of time to get tickets. If you like food documentaries, you’ll like this, we bet.

-Can’t or don’t eat dairy but miss ice cream? Not to worry—here’s some information on the creamiest vegan ice cream as chosen by someone who has eaten every vegan ice cream in the world (or so they say).

-Also from Bon Appétit, a fantastic piece about food, feminism and what cooking can really mean.

-Welp, there goes THAT—and by THAT we mean the buying of precut fruit at the store. Why? The dorks at HuffPost say there are red flags. What’re we supposed to do? Buy a whole cantaloupe? Like, go thump the melon, pick one, take it home, pull out a knife and a cutting board and cut into it, pull the seeds out, then cut it into smaller, more manageable chunks? What do they expect us to do? Go to the store and find a kiwi fruit, take it home, pull out the knife and cutting board again, cut it in half, find a spoon, dig the fruit out and eat it? WITH OUR HANDS AND MOUTHS?!

We’re basically just hangin’ tough over here.

Finally

In the print edition of SFR, Martin Rios of Restaurant Martín joins forces with Corey Fidler of Hotel Santa Fe for Build-a-Bowl, that restaurant all your social media fans from around Santa Fe keep whining about. “It’s so good, ohmygod!” Shut up, jerks! Naw, just kidding...we hear it’s AMAZING.

A Totally Scientific Breakdown of The Fork’s Correspondence

Number of Letters Received 27 *Thanks for the many “welcome back” messages, gang!

Most Helpful Tip of the Week (a barely edited letter from a reader) “You are immature and childish. My friends were right.” *We. Are. WOUNDED! Naw, jay-kay—read whatever newsletters and send whatever redundant emails you want, John L. (childish AND immature?)—we really don’t give a shit.

Actually Helpful Tip Bet you didn’t know that…McDonald’s once offered bubble gum-flavored broccoli at its restaurants *Thanks for the info, Albo F. We’re scared!

Woah-oh-oh-oh-oh, The Fork