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Jun 7, 2009 05:43 AM

Sub for red wine in pasta sauce?

Help! :)

I'm making a recipe for ricotta artichoke lasagna tonight for some friends who are coming over - but I just realized the recipe calls for a 3/4 cup of red wine in the tomato sauce portion. They are Muslim and I know they don't take any alcohol, even if it's baked into something.

Any ideas for something flavorful I can use as a substitute, instead of just water ? From past experience, I know this lasagna can be a bit dry so I definitely can't just cut that 3/4 cup of liquid out, I need to replace it with a veggie stock an option, do you think?

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  1. If you have any decaf coffee, try 1/4 cup of brewed coffee + 1/2 cup of water or canned tomato sauce. Coffee is a trick used to deepen the tomato flavor of tomato sauce

    1 Reply
    1. re: gordeaux

      The coffee I am drinking is a somewhat acidic blend and is really bringing out the sweetness in the tomatoes.

    2. I agree with gordeaux, but I'd try instant espresso powder........and of course, you could always just use some herbed-up veggie stock.

      1. I agree with those suggestions already posted however I would reduce the amount of coffee to 1/8 cup and add a teaspoons of fresh lemon juice to the mix.

        1. Saute some tomato paste until slightly browned. This will give you depth of flavor; but you may have to add some stock to replace the liquid.

          1 Reply
            1. re: Boccone Dolce

              I agree, Balsamic vinegar is a wonderful substitute! =)

                1. re: ipsedixit

                  i was poking around on the copy cat website and saw a recipe for Olive Garden's sauce that calls for grape jelly!

                  1. re: ipsedixit

                    hmm, I've never heard of using grape juice before ... I have thrown in V8 before though, come to think of it. I'm always changing my sauce based on what I have in the available. Wouldn't the grape juice make it kind of sweet?

                  2. re: DishDelish

                    But not one-to-one. I'd use a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar, and stock or tomato juice for the rest.