If you follow me on Facebook you were a part of 2.0’s Epic Weekend of Cooking. You didn’t have to clean up after him so it was probably very enjoyable for you.
After seeing the fruits of his labour/my supervision, a few of you emailed to ask for our spaghetti and meatballs recipe. This makes me a little concerned about your social lives because some of those emails arrived on a Saturday night when you could have been doing something fun like cleaning your toilets.
So because I feel a little sorry for you, I’ll share the recipe for my almost-famous signature pasta sauce. 2.0 says my sauce is the best sauce and he never lies. Nothing is exact about this recipe. It tastes great every time.
I live in Canada. I’ve written quantities and ingredients in Canadian. I’m sure you can find the approximate equivalents in your country.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 375 grams (0.83 pound) Johnsonville hot Italian sausage meat
- 680 grams (1.5 pound) extra lean ground beef (if making meatballs leave this out – please see yelling below)
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 green (or orange, red, yellow) pepper, diced
- 1 zucchini, diced
- 10-12 mushrooms, diced
- sometimes I throw in a handful of chopped spinach or leafy greens
- 1 can (13 fl. oz / 369 ml) tomato paste
- 1 can (28 fl. oz / 796 ml) whole tomatoes
- 1-2 tablespoons dried parsley (optional)
- 1-2 tablespoons dried basil
- salt and pepper to taste – I find the sausage seasons the sauce nicely so I don’t tend to add much of either
Mise en place your ingredients before beginning. Heat the olive oil in a big Dutch oven over medium heat – you’ll need a very large pot (especially if you make the meatball version of this meal). Brown the ground sausage and extra lean ground beef, breaking it up as it cooks. Drain a little fat as desired. Add the onion, garlic and pepper after the meat has browned a little. Continue browning and breaking up the meat, letting the veggies soften a bit. Then throw in the zucchini and mushrooms. Add some leafy greens so you’ll live longer. Keep cooking away.
Once the meats have cooked through, add the tomato paste and give a good stir to combine. Then add the can of whole tomatoes, juices and all. Break the tomatoes up with your spoon and keep breaking them up as your sauce simmers. Add the parsley and basil. I let everything simmer over low heat for a good 30 minutes, closer to an hour if I can. I add a little salt and pepper if desired.
Serve over pasta of choice.
Wanna add meatballs? This is the meatball recipe we use. 2.0 found it on the internet which is impressive given that he can’t figure out how to attach a photo to an email.
If making meatballs, we leave the ground beef out of the sauce and use that ground beef for the meatballs.
I make my sauce first and get it simmering. Then we make the balls which takes no time at all because we mise en place our ingredients. Only an idiot skips mise en place.
We don’t change a thing about the recipe. (The recipe has some options – we use ground beef only, one tablespoon minced garlic, one teaspoon salt.) We use a small ice cream scoop to make sure the balls are the same size – it holds about 1.5 tablespoons of meaty goodness. We roll all the balls before adding to the sauce, then gently place the meatballs in the pot (it’s a tight squeeze) and don’t move them for 20 minutes just as the recipe states. Then we gently stir and let ’em cook for another 20 minutes. Read the recipe. You’ll know what I’m talking about.
I WANT YOU TO READ THIS VERY CAREFULLY BECAUSE I WILL NOT RESPOND TO 400 COMMENTS ASKING THE SAME STUPID QUESTIONS*: If we are making meatballs we leave the ground beef out of the pasta sauce. Do you understand? We use only the ground sausage in the sauce and use the ground beef for the meatballs. I swear to God if anyone asks me about this I will lose my goddamned mind. THIS IS EXACTLY WHY I DON’T BLOG ABOUT FOOD ANYMORE, BRENDA. People are the worst.
*I acknowledge that many of you will now be tempted to ask me a lot of stupid questions about a variety of topics and understand that I have brought this on myself.
There is no download for my sauce recipe. I’m not a food blogger and to be honest I’m not that invested in your success.