Saturday, November 14, 2009

Simple Quick Spagehtti Dinner for One (or Two)

I cannot extol the virtues of canned diced (no salt added) tomatoes enough. Sure a sauce made with the freshest of vine ripened tomatoes is fabulous, but who has the time anymore to peel seed, and dice all those wonderful fruits? And the tomatoes this time of year? Forget quality friend.

So, canned diced tomatoes are versatile in the kitchen, for sauces, soups, casseroles... the list could probably go for a very lengthy while. I like them for a quick tomato sauce or gravy because they cook down quickly and can be mashed into a chunky sauce.

You will need:

1/2 Onion, diced
2 Cloves garlic, smashed and diced
2 cans of diced tomatoes
1/2 box of spaghetti noodles (whole wheat)

Start a large pot of water for the noodles, on high to bring to a rolling boil. In the mean-time saute the onion in a large skillet until translucent. Once the onions are clear, add the diced garlic and turn down the heat to low, so the garlic doesn't burn. After letting the garlic heat through, pour in the two cans of tomatoes. You can pour out some of the liquid to reduce the cooking time. Bring the tomato mix to a simmer and reduce liquid by about half. By then the water should be ready for the pasta. Make sure to cook until al dente.

When the tomato liquid has reduced sufficiently, take a potato masher to the mess and release all your stress by squishing the tomato bits within an inch of their lives. When the pasta reaches al dente, remove from the pasta water and add to your tomato sauce. Toss to coat and serve with a good bit of Parmesan cheese on top.

This should make enough for two meals and can easily be modified for variety. I would try chicken tenders for a Chicken Parmesan type dish, or turkey meatballs. Serve with a side salad or garlic bread for a traditional Italian-American meal.


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