The recipe I am about to share, is the Spaghetti Sauce my mom perfected. I remember mom at the stove, carefully tending to her pot of sauce. Back then, mom was tweaking her recipe. A little of this, a pinch of that. She also took notes, on what other relatives were putting in their sauce. I recall a phone conversation she had with Aunt Violet. It was during that conversation, I learned Aunt Violet put orange juice in her meat sauce. Mom tried that. She also tried wine. As she experimented, I was always willing to be her taste tester; and my friends were, too. I recall one of them being taken back, at the first taste of the sauce. Stopped in her tracks, and blown away, she proclaimed, "This is good!" I think she would have happily eaten dinner, at the stove, dipping bread into the sauce. It was hard to pull her away. I am thankful to have this recipe in my repertoire.
This looks like a lot of ingredients, but I am going to break it down, to manageable tasks.
Now, back in the day, mom served her meat sauce with spaghetti noodles. That is fine, but I prefer Roasted Spaghetti Squash. To me, the taste is better than pasta. Also, using squash replaces bad carbohydrates, for healthy, nutritious carbohydrates. With this swap, I don't feel guilty eating the garlic bread. The recipe can be found here: Roasted Spaghetti Squash
* Since I am taking the time to roast, I always throw in a whole bulb of garlic, or two. It's nice to have roasted garlic on hand. It also stores well, shrink wrapped, in the freezer.
Today I am using a 50/50 mix of ground turkey breast, and Italian sausage. Since ground turkey is involved, I always fortify the ground turkey with Kitchen Bouquet.
Let me just put this out there, because I know my mom will call me and say, "I don't use ground turkey!"
Mom uses ground beef, in her recipe. However, you can use any combination, of meats: beef, pork, Italian sausage, ground turkey etc.
The squash is in the oven, and all the ingredients are prepped. This will move along nicely.
To begin: choose a large frying pan that has a lid. Start by sauteing the button mushrooms, in a little olive oil. Remove from pan, and set aside.
Using the same pan, saute onion, and garlic, with olive oil.
Add meat mixture to the onion and garlic. Cook over medium high heat, until the meat has browned.
*The easiest way to remove the liquids, is to tilt the pan, and absorb with a paper towel.
Stir in Contadina Tomato Paste, water, and Worcestershire sauce. Per my mom, you must use Contadina tomato paste! The water ratio is: 2 cans of water, for each can of tomato paste. Stir to combine.
Add mushrooms to the sauce.
Bring spaghetti sauce to a boil.
If you've ever brought spaghetti sauce to a boil, you know that it splatters all over the place. This is why you need to use a pan with a lid. As it is coming to a boil, you will want to cover the pan. If you notice the picture, you see the spatula is keeping the lid propped open.
Once the sauce has come to a boil, reduce the heat to medium low. Continue simmering for 30 minutes.
Just prior to serving, stir in fresh herbs.
As I mentioned before, I like to serve the sauce with Roasted Spaghetti Squash. Just fluff up the strands of squash, to resemble spaghetti. Use a fork, and follow the direction of the strands. Make a well in the center, of the squash, for the sauce.
* For plating presentation, I am using the squash as a bowl. If you choose a small squash, it makes the perfect sized serving.
Healthy eating never looked so good!
LINDA'S SPAGHETTI SAUCE
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Cup button mushrooms, sliced
1 Tablespoon olive oil,
1 Large red onion, diced
5 Large garlic cloves, minced
1 Pound ground round (or combination of: Italian sausage, pork, turkey, etc.)
1 Teaspoon salt
1/2 Teaspoon pepper
1/4 Teaspoon oregano
1 Teaspoon chili powder
1/4 Teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 (6 ounce) Cans Contadina Tomato Paste + 4 (6 ounce) Cans water
1 Teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 Cup fresh parsley, chopped
1/4 Cup fresh basil, chopped
Heat olive oil, in a large skillet, over medium high heat. Saute mushrooms, until browned. Remove from pan, and set aside. Using the same skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Saute onion and garlic, until softened. Add meat to onions and garlic. Continue cooking over medium high heat. Crumble meat, and cook until browned. Drain liquids. Stir in salt, pepper, oregano, chili powder, red pepper flakes, and sugar. Stir in Contadina Tomato Paste, water, and Worcestershire sauce. Bring sauce to a boil, using the lid, mostly covered, to prevent splattering. Once sauce has come to a boil, reduce heat, to medium low. Let sauce simmer for 30 minutes. Stir in parsley and basil. Serve with spaghetti noodles, or Spaghetti Squash.
*To use spaghetti squash halves, as serving bowl, look for smaller sized squash.