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How to Make Vegetarian Espagnole Sauce

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How to Make Vegetarian Espagnole Sauce

In it’s simplest form, espagnole sauce is a meat-based stock thickened with a roux. You make beef stock by slowly simmering beef bones and trimmings in herbs for several hours. It’s a time intensive process that requires one hefty stock pot.

I have not endeavored to make a beef stock, but I have made vegetable stock. While at first I didn’t think all the money and time was worth making a homemade vegetable stock, I have since changed my mind. Vegetable stock is a good thing to have around and a good way to make a quality meal, especially a faux espagnole. 

How to Make a Vegetable, Vegetarian Espagnole-esque Sauce

*2 tbsp. butter, divided

*1 celery stem

*3 carrots

*1 yellow onion

*1 portobello mushroom

*2 tbsp. flour

*2 c. vegetable stock

*1/2 c. pureed tomatoes

*2 tbsp. basil

*salt and pepper to taste

Directions: Melt 1 tbsp. of butter in stock pot. Add chopped celery, carrots, onion, and mushroom to pot and cook until soft. Meanwhile, create a roux (1 tbsp. butter melted with 2 tbsp. flour) and leave it on the heat until its brown, but not burnt. Add stock and tomato puree to roux. Stir continuously over medium heat until thick. Add thickened stock and tomato mixture (vegetarian espagnole) to vegetables. Add basil, salt, and pepper and simmer for 5-10 minutes.

Notes: I added added 1 tsp. of coffee to this recipe, but I really don’t see the point. The idea is to make the sauce brown, so that it resembles a real beef espagnole sauce. But who cares?!?!

The sauce was served atop noodle shells and fake ground meat (soy) with some fresh Parmesan. While it tasted good, the meal was nothing to write home about. Next time around I’ll do more in the way herbs and peppers to bring it up about five notches.

What would you do to make this vegetarian dish better?

9 Responses to “How to Make Vegetarian Espagnole Sauce”

  1. Eva says:

    Sounds wonderful, I haven’t tried making homemade vegetable stock before, but looking at this makes me want to give it a try 🙂

  2. Tiffany says:

    This sounds really good….. I wouldn’t change much, but I would probably add garlic and more herbs!

  3. Yummy! A vegetarian version of meat sauce sounds just like what I need these days!

  4. Kristen says:

    This sauce sounds lovely as it is. I might add a few more herbs and of course, garlic makes its way into most of my cooking.

  5. It’s a great recipe, but I agree with you…some more herbs or spice would be great. I am a big garlic fan so 🙂

  6. Monet says:

    Oh perfect…we are always looking for more vegetarian sauces! In the midst of all this confusion/tragedy I’m facing, I find solace in the thought of this sauce…food evokes so many memories and can bring such comfort. Thank you for sharing with me..and thank you for supporting me through the good and the bad. May your week be full of laughter and love. Hold onto those you love.

  7. I go through phases with vegetable stock. Sometimes I get to lazy to make it. But I actually think it’s cheaper than buying prepared stock because carrots and celery don’t cost much. This sauce sounds delicious though, especially with soy meat. I have a soft spot for fake ground meat and sausage.

  8. Rita says:

    Mmmmm… it sounds so fresh and yummy!! Perfect to serve with crostini for a party with friends.

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