The leftover and undercooked meat from our shio koji burger explorations did not go to waste. It became the starting point for seeing how shio koji treated/seasoned/enhanced meat works in a pasta sauce. We crumbled the remaining burger meat into crushed tomatoes that were seasoned with 1% salt. We added some red wine to the pan and slowly cooked these three ingredients together on the stove. The umami rich burger meat seasoned and enhanced the tomatoes. The wine added acidity and structure. The mushroom notes of the meat toned down in the slow simmering. The overall meatiness and savoriness of the sauce was more intense than my go to burger and meat sauce. (Yes, I have a tendency to cook to many burgers and use the leftovers in pasta sauce.) The meat sauce was a fuller, more developed sauce. The improvement on flavor has me more excited about treating meats in advance with shio koji before making pasta sauces. An extrapolation on the advance treatment of meat with shio koji has me looking at treating meat trim for sauce making and meaty bones and trimmings for broth and soup making. I believe the enzymes in the shio koji will allow for more and greater flavor extraction.
As for our bowl of pasta, we used the meat sauce to dress our bolted hard wheat noodles. We topped the pasta with a dollop of ricotta cheese and a healthy sprinkling of Pecorino Romano cheese.