Monday, April 4, 2011

Week 7 Day 4 and 5 – Whoa I was more behind than I thought...

Okay so I am going to cram the last week and a half of February into this one post. February is like the month that will never end when it comes to this blog. I feel like the little engine that could. "I think I can, I think I can."
So here it goes...

Thursday of week 7 was Steve's Standard Spaghetti. If you haven't noticed, we like spaghetti in our house. I have several spaghetti recipes in my rotation and I am accumulating more with this challenge. This one, however, is the original. Steve has been cooking his own spaghetti since he was in college. He has perfected it. When we first got married this was the dish I was most intimidated by. I mean, I was NOT a cook and my husband made some of the best spaghetti out there. I used this as an excuse not to even try to cook. I held on to that excuse for a couple of years. Thankfully somewhere between the honeymoon and 2 kids I put on my big girl pants and learned to cook it for myself. Ironically, the other day I heard Amelia say to her grandmommie "My mom makes the best spaghetti in the world!" Is it wrong that I didn't give Steve the credit for that one? Nah, He will get his props when Walt starts declaring "My Dad can beat up your dad!"

Steve's Spaghetti Sauce
1 lb Ground Turkey (or ground beef if you are so inclined)
1 small onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 jar of your favorite pasta sauce
(this needs to be a decent quality sauce. I like Bertolli or Classico's Tomato and Basil sauce)
1 can of diced tomatoes, drained
1 dried bay leaf
a pinch of brown sugar
salt and pepper to taste

Like I said, it is simple but delicious. Just brown the meat with the onion and garlic. Add a little salt and pepper. Add the add the pasta sauce, tomatoes, and bay leaf. Let simmer for 20 to 30 minutes. Add sugar, salt and pepper to taste.

Steve's pasta tips: Add a (very) little olive oil to the pasta water so that the noodles don't stick together. Don't forget to salt the water generously!

Friday night, the night before Amelia's Bday shindig, my in laws were in town visiting so I wanted to have something simple and quick. I found a recipe in my Rachel Ray 30 Min Meals cookbook for French Dip Roast Beef Sandwiches. Sounded perfect for a friday night with the family. I served these sandwiches with sweet potato fries. So good!

French Dip Roast Beef Sandwiches
2 TBSP butter
1 shallot, chopped
1 1/2 TBSP flour
1 shot dry sherry (optional)
2 cans (14oz each) beef consomme
1 1/2 pounds deli sliced roast beef
Steak seasoning such as Montreal Seasoning by McCormick OR Course salt and ground black pepper to taste.
4 torpedo sandwich rolls, split
(and I added) sliced swiss cheese (because cheese makes everything better!)

In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Saute shallots in the butter 2 minutes. Add flour and cook 1 minute longer. Whisk in sherry and cook liquid out. Whisk in consumme in a slow stream. Bring sauce to a bubble and allow to simmer over low heat until sandwiches are ready to serve.

Pile roast beef loosely on a larger work surface, and season with grill season or salt and pepper. Gather 4 ramekins or small soup cups for dipping sauce, and 4 split rolls. Using tongs to help you assemble, dip meat into sauce and pile into rolls. Set ramekins with extra sauce next to sandwiches.

So this post is getting long.... I think I shall end it and start a new one for week 8. Stay tuned...

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