Meatless “Meat” Sauce with Chickpeas and Mushrooms
Why This Recipe Works
To create a vegetarian version of a savory, unctuous tomato-meat sauce, we started with cremini mushrooms and tomato paste—both rich sources of savory flavor. Extra-virgin olive oil did double duty, enriching the sauce and helping toast the classic Italian aromatics: garlic, dried oregano, and red pepper flakes. We bulked up the sauce with chopped chickpeas that had been rinsed of their excess starch. To thin the sauce without watering down its flavor, we added vegetable broth.