Chickpea Bolognese

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The trick to creating a rich vegan bolognese sauce, much like traditional bolognese, is to slow cook it for several hours. Also, use dried chickpeas if possible. You may substitute canned chickpeas, but I prefer the texture and flavor the lightly pre-soaked chickpeas take on after simmering all day.

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(Farro Stuffed Cabbage Rolls with Chickpea Bolognese)

Chickpea Bolognese Sauce

1 c. chickpeas (soaked at least 2 hours or overnight, then rough chopped in food processor. It is okay if they are still slightly raw since they are supposed to cook in the sauce. So don’t pulverize them.)

1 stalk celery (diced)

1 medium onion (diced)

2 to 3 whole carrots (diced)

5-8 garlic cloves (finely chopped)

1 T. olive oil or grapeseed oil

1 c. vermouth or white wine

1 can coconut milk (save can and wash out with water to add to sauce)

1 can tomato paste (save can and wash out with water to add to sauce)

2 cans diced tomatoes

1 t. basil

1/2 t. sage

1/2 t. oregano

1/4 t. thyme

1/4 t. cayenne

2 bay leaves

salt and pepper

Saute the celery, onion, carrot and garlic in oil on medium high heat. Once the veggies are tender and fragrant, add the rough chopped chickpeas. Lightly brown the chickpeas–and then add the vermouth to deglaze the pan. Add dried spices, coconut milk, tomatoes, and tomato paste. Save the cans to rinse with water and then add right to sauce. Bring to a boil and then simmer. Cover and cook for 2 to 3 hours, tasting and adding water as necessary.

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