I warn you beforehand–all amounts in this are approximate, because I don’t measure with any exactness when I make spaghetti sauce. I do love homemade spaghetti sauce, though. Over thin spaghetti. With obscene amounts of Parmesan cheese. (I used the canned stuff for this, partly because I seriously like so much of it that I can’t afford to use the other kind!) And we haven’t had it for a while. I have NOT been in the mood for chicken, however, so I’ve been doing what I can with other meats, and tonight was a ground beef kind of night. To make this spaghetti sauce you need:
1 lb ground beef–I get the extra lean stuff at Costco, since I got the shaft in the genetically high cholesterol department
3 quarts tomatoes (this is the best measurement I can give–I freeze garden tomatoes in quart bags and use them for this. You just halve them and cut out the core and squeeze a little excess liquid out and stick them in the bag–you can cut them into chunks if they’re big–and freeze the bag when it’s full. When you take them out and they thaw, you pour off the excess water before using them. The ones I used tonight were from, um, September of 2011 and they were just fine, although I wouldn’t keep them that long without a deep freeze. I sometimes use bottled tomatoes as well.)
1 small can tomato sauce
1 small can tomato paste
1 medium onion
Sugar, salt, oregano, and basil
Alrighty. You want to dice the onion and separate it into two piles; one pile gets tossed into some olive oil (enough to saute plus a little extra) and cooked until it starts to get tender. Throw in however much minced garlic you want–I use the jarred kind because it makes my life easier, and I end up with at least a few teaspoons, I think–and saute for another minute before adding the tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste and spices. You want a couple of teaspoons of sugar, maybe–it helps with the acidity–and a heaping teaspoon or more of basil, while maybe a half a teaspoon of oregano. (That’s how our family likes things–feel free to change it up.) If you’re using frozen tomatoes, you want two teaspoons of salt, probably, or to taste, but if you’re using bottled or canned, you’ll want to reduce that, since most of them are salted already. Bring the whole mess to a boil and then turn it down and let it simmer for at least an hour, preferably an hour and a half. When you’re down to half an hour or so, brown the ground beef with the remaining onion, drain any grease, and add that in. Voila! Enjoy!
As for the second yummy thing, well, it’s much easier. You take 10 Oreos and 3 of these Vanilla Bean Greek Yogurt Pops (they were sampling them at Costco the last time I was there, and I caved) and stick them in a blender with however much milk you think you need. I may have added a bit much–our shakes were on the runny side–but my hubby and I didn’t particularly care. We got two 10-ounce-or-so tasty Oreo shakes out of it, and it was a happy, happy thing.