Sheet Pan Sunday: Hawa Hassan puts this spicy red wine sauce on everything

From roasted vegetables to chicken, this sweet and spicy sauce makes everything better.
Kara Birnbaum/TODAY

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By Hawa Hassan

The humble sheet pan is the hero of weeknight cooking. Its sleek, spacious surface allows the busy home cook to get a balanced dinner — protein! starch! vegetables! — on the table quickly with very little prep or cleanup. Just chop, drop and roast.

That’s why every week, we’ll be sharing throw-it-all-on-a-sheet-pan recipes from our favorite chefs and home cooks. Whether you’re cooking for yourself, friends, family or meal-prepping for the week, you should keep these one-pan meals in your back pocket — or, rather, your oven.

This week, Hawa Hassan, founder and CEO of Basbaas, a line of Somali hot sauces and chutneys, shares the recipe for the spicy red wine sauce she puts on everything. Here, she puts it on roasted vegetables, but it really works on anything you have stashed in your fridge.

In order to prevent tearing up while chopping onions, Hassan holds a match between her front teeth. The theory is that the red end of the match absorbs the sulfuric compounds before they can reach your eyes.Kara Birnbaum/TODAY

Awaze is a versatile sauce hailing from Ethiopia where it’s used on just about everything. You can use it as a finishing sauce, as I do here, or brush it on just about any protein (fish, poultry, tofu or tempeh) before grilling, sautéing or roasting.

Awaze is the perfect balance of sweet and spicy.Kara Birnbaum/TODAY

Technique tip: To cut the carrots, hold a carrot at a 45-degree angle to your cutting board and slice a 1-inch chunk off, rotate the carrot a quarter turn and slice off another chunk. Continue to the end of the carrot and cut all of the carrots this way. (This is a "roll cut;" it's a good technique for cutting long vegetables to give them lots of surface area for browning.)

Hassan demonstrating a "roll cut."Kara Birnbaum/TODAY

In Ethiopia, they use local honey wine to make this sauce, but here we can use a combo of red wine and honey to replicate its sweet but tannic flavor. This dish is perfect and simple as is, but feel free to scatter some fresh herbs (like cilantro) or toasted nuts, such as almonds, over the top.

"Smells like home," said Hassan as she drizzled the sauce over the vegetables.Kara Birnbaum/TODAY

For the full recipe, click in below: