The first meal I learned to make was Speghetti and meat sauce when I was in my teens. Over the years, I have perfected the art, adding more spices and marinating and changing temps etc. etc.
There are many variations depending what materials I have to work with.
This is what I made on Friday night:
I started with sauteeing the onions. I normally julianne the onions because I love onions, but since Marc likes them diced and barely noticeable. Add some garlic, salt and pepper to make the onions super yummy and tasty.
Once the onions are nice and soft add in ground beef. I used a lb of extra lean meat.
I didn’t have time to marinate the beef, but it is very important to flavor the meat, even just 1/2 hr of marinating would suffice. Instead, I just added some oregano, fresh chopped basil (from my plant), chili flakes, thyme and S&P.
I always add a touch of wine when marinating, but since I didn’t, I’ll add it while I’m browning the meat. To ensure that the meat really absorbs the flavors, I turned it to medium heat to cook it slowly. The ideal is to cook it at low, but I’m impatient and hungry.
I used 2005 Monte Cheval Vranac this time. I got it as a house warming gift awhile ago. Later found it it costs less than $10 a bottle. Cheap bastards. But it’s pretty hearty, with indistinct sour berry fruit, leather and earth. I read it has a touch of Cabernet Savignon in it too. Not good to drink, so I use it for marinate. BTW, my gneral rule for marinating with wine is simple. (because I am a simple person) White meat=white wine. Red meat=redwine. It makes so much sense…
I hope you started boiling the water for your pasta when you started the onions… the timing is almost perfect to have everything finish at the same time. As an ex-cook, timing is crucial to ensure your entire meal is done at the same time so hot dishes doesn’t sit and cools for no reason. I added some frozen mixed veggies to add some color to the dish. I also cooked broccoli on the side because I want to make sure I don’t eat too much carbs.
Make sure your drain the meat of the oil first. Nothing is more disgusting than an oily pasta sauce. It is recommended that you even rinse the meat with hot water. I prefer not to, just to savor the taste. I like using canned tomato sauce, it makes my life 5 billion times easier. I used Unico this time because it’s the brand that Marc always buys. Not my favorite. BRAVO is the best tomato sauce ever, it only has 1 simple kind, not like some that has like: tomato basil, parmesan, vodka.. blah blah blah. Bravo is just a simple tomato sauce base that lets YOU make it to what you want it to be. They’re normally at the very bottom of the shelf at grocery stores because it’s cheap like 99 cents a can.
Add more spice.. I added more fresh Basil this time, we were craving tomato basil… plus our basil plant is dying. This is when you add spices to your sauce. Don’t taste the sauce for flavor right now, it won’t taste like anything, you have to let you cook on low for a good 10 minutes before the flavors start emerging.
Wanted more wine in the sauce too.
Drain pasta, pour desired amount of sauce ontop, garnish and.. VOILA!!!
(I know.. bad presentation with the drippy sauce… whateve.)