Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Penne & Meat Sauce

Le sigh. It's Tuesday and Tim goes back to work tomorrow. I've been sort of preoccupied all day, and thus forgot to take pictures of this recipe until I was putting the dishes in the dishwasher. Also, I'm not 100% sure where my camera is, so there you have it. BUT, this was way more delicious than I expected it to be, and so I'm thrilled. (Also thrilling me: Betty Crocker came out with some gluten-free mixes, and so far, they're available at my local grocery stores AND they're delicious! I'm a happy girl.)

One pound ground beef (on the other hand, we had LOTS of leftover pasta, but not so much leftover sauce, so doubling this might be handy if you're trying to feed more than 2 people.)
Half an onion, diced
Two cloves garlic, minced
One 14oz can of tomato sauce, or two 14oz cans of diced tomatoes. Or some combination thereof. Whatever make you smile on the inside.
Olive Oil
Thyme--ground, dried, fresh, whatever makes your heart sing.

About a pound of pasta. I used gluten-free penne,* and you should feel free to use whatever kind of pasta makes your soul take flight. Just saying.

Firstly, dice your onion and mince your garlic. Pour a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet and heat it over medium heat. Toss the onion in and let it cook for a couple minutes, just until the onions start to get clear. Throw in the garlic and stir. Toss in the beef and cook until brown.

Drain the fat, sprinkle in a little salt and pepper, and add a healthy shake or two of thyme. Add in the tomatoes and cover. Simmer on low heat for 30 minutes. Uncover and simmer again for another 30 minutes. Cook the pasta while this happens.

Taste the sauce for seasoning and adjust as necessary. Spoon over the pasta and serve individually. You can also stir in some parmesan, but I didn't do this for all those lactose-intolerant reasons. Tim did, and he liked it.

The sauce was incredibly flavorful and succulent. It was the exact right amount of salty and meaty; possibly the only time I've gotten the perfect salt-to-meat ratio in a sauce. Enjoy!

*The pasta I used was made with brown rice, and it was fantastic. There was no discernible difference in taste between it and regular wheat-pasta, unless I took a bite without sauce.

Serves 3 with no leftover sauce, more if you double the sauce recipe or are feeding small children.
Takes about an hour.
Difficulty: 2.

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