Tag Archives: summer squash

Meat “Sauce”

Initially, I wanted to make pasta sauce, but when I started to cook, I changed my mind. Instead, I decided not to add tomatoes or pasta and to leave the grain as a decision for a different day. I got this ground beef at Grassway Organic Farm and was excited about the possible meal I’d make with it. So when I started cooking, I decided not to add the tomatoes so as not to hide the taste, and added veggies and some spices instead. Basically, you can use any veggies you like or have on hand.  The spices definitely added the warmth I was seeking without making the dish spicy.

Spices

Spices

Ingredients:
1 large onion, diced
1 lb of ground beef
Spices (salt, freshly ground black pepper, turmeric, sweet curry, ground chipotle, adobo, garlic powder, ground cumin; all spices and mixes are from Penzey’s but you can use what you like)
1 medium zucchini, diced
1 medium summer squash, diced
2 bell peppers (I used orange and red), diced
Olive oil

Steps:
1. In a large pan, heat olive oil and saute the onion.
2. Add the meat when the onion is soft and translucent.
3. Add spices, to taste. Cook till the meat is just about done.
4. Add the veggies.
5. When the veggies are just getting soft, reduce heat to low and let cook for a bit, until the veggies are done to your desired tenderness.

Beef, onions, and spices

Beef, onions, and spices

Added the Zucchini and Summer Squash

Added the Zucchini and Summer Squash

Added the Bell Peppers

Added the Bell Peppers

Done!

Done!

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Pasta Sauce – Vegetables Galore

Chunky Pasta Sauce

Chunky Pasta Sauce

I haven’t made anything pasta related in a while and figured it was time to get back to that.  So today I decided to make pasta sauce.  Additionally, I had a lot of vegetables in my fridge that I haven’t used up yet, so I figured it’s a perfect opportunity to use them.  This worked out really well since I like a really chunky tomato sauce.  And if you have kids, this is a great way to get them to eat vegetables.  This recipe can also be vegetarian quite easily – just leave the meat out.  With this recipe, use what ever veggies you like, in any quantity you like.  Here is what I did.

We're cooking now!

We're cooking now!

Pasta Sauce Ingredients

Pasta Sauce Ingredients

Adding the meat

Adding the meat

Ingredients: 1 lb of ground turkey
1 very large carrot (cut into half moons)
2 red bell peppers (diced)
1 large white onion (minced)
1 zucchini (cut into half moons)
1 summer squash (cut into half moons)
3.5 oz of mushrooms (that was the size of the package I had. Use more or less)
3-4 cloves of garlic (finely minced)
2 cans of tomatoes (I used 1 can of Red Gold roasted garlic and onion and 1 can of Red Gold basil, garlic, and oregano)
Roasted tomatoes (optional; I had some on hand so I used them)
Tomato paste (I used about 3 oz, half of a 6oz can of Red Gold tomato paste)
2-3 tb of olive oil
Olives (optional, but I had some so I used them; chopped, about 2 handfuls)
Garlic powder
Paprika Salt, Pepper (freshly ground)
Flat leaf parsley (for garnish and for cooking, to taste)
6 bay leaves (3 for the sauce, 3 for the pasta)

See the parsley

See the parsley

All the ingredients cooking

All the ingredients cooking

Adding pasta to the sauce

Adding pasta to the sauce

Steps:
1. Saute the onion for a few minutes and then add the garlic.
2. Add the carrots. Let cook for about 5 minutes.
3. Add the rest of the vegetables and salt & pepper. Let cook for a few minutes (I put the lid on and let the veggies steam a little).
4. If you are adding meat, do it at this stage. I pushed the veggies to the sides of the pan and added the meat into the middle so that it can brown. I also season the meat at this point. Cook the meat until it’s all browned and thoroughly cooked.
5. Add bay leaves and parsley. Mix everything together and taste seasoning. This is when I add more salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder and anything else that strikes my fancy.
6. Add the tomato products (canned tomatoes, tomato paste, and roasted tomatoes if you have them).
7. Put the lid on and let cook over medium-low for about 10-15 minutes.
8. Add the pasta to the sauce (which has been cooking in a separate pot, according to the directions on the box.) I serve it with a little bit of cheese grated on top. I used a very mild goat’s cheese.

I know you can't resist this!

I know you can't resist this!