Friday, July 19

Rachael Ray's Cincinnati Spaghetti

I saw this twist on an old classic spaghetti dinner recipe on a cooking show with "make ahead" meals, and thought it looked really good. Although, I didn't need a make ahead meal this time, I did want something slow cooked & relaxed for company and weekend entertaining. It was all of the above! 

My company loved it! It simmered and bubbled away on the stove and made my whole house happy smelling. You know that smell, right? Its the smell of cinnamon rolls or bread baking, or turkey roasting up in the oven... the smell travels and fills all available space. You breathe it in, and pretty soon your mouth and taste buds and stomach are asking you to find out how much longer it will be before the food is done... that happy smell. In this case, the smells were a combination of authentic Mexican flavors of spicy chili powder, smoky paprika, fragrant cocoa powder, earthy Mexican oregano, and sweet ripe summer tomatoes. It makes you wonder if you are making enchilada sauce or chili certainty not spaghetti. (At least not any spaghetti that I grew up eating in the northwest.) This will blow your socks off starting with the slow cooked smell as it fills up your home. 

This is the perfect lazy weekend meal that you should try next. I can't wait to make it again! I meant to snap some more pictures but once the first taste was done.... my table filled up with people, the pot emptied, stomachs were filled, and the rest was history. Then I remembered my camera was still sitting by the stove. 

(My take on) Rachael Ray's Cincinnati Spaghetti

Ingredient list (I know its long just trust me)

2 Tbs olive oil
3 slices of bacon, finely chopped raw
1 lb of ground beef, your choice
3 Tbs of Worcestershire sauce
2 Tbs of chili powder
1 Tbs of cocoa powder
1 Tbs smoked sweet paprika
1 1/2 tsp of Mexican or regular dried oregano, lightly crushed
1 tsp of allspice
1/4 tsp of cumin
2 tsp heaping minced garlic
2 large jalapeno chile peppers, seeds and membranes removed, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
1/8 tsp ground cloves
2 Tbs tomato paste
1 raw tomato, cubed
2 cups beef stock
30 oz or 2 (14-15oz) cans equaling 30 oz tomato sauce
i box of thin spaghetti noodles

1. Heat the olive oil in a dutch oven with a lid over medium heat.
2. Add the bacon and crisp it.
3. Then add the raw beef and brown it.
4. While its browning, take a bowl and start measuring out all the spices, so when in the meat is done you can just dump them in.
5. When the meat is done, add all the spices, Worcestershire sauce, onions, garlic and jalapenos.  Cook this for about 10 minutes over medium low - onions should be tender.

6. Stir in the tomato paste. Wait a minute then add the stock, tomato, and tomato sauce.
7. Bring it to the beginning of a boil, then reduce the heat, cover partially and simmer for 45 minutes.
8. The original directions say this is where you stop, if you are making this ahead of time, for a make ahead meal. On the night you want to serve it cook up your pasta and serve it with bread or salad or both.
This one is a bit blurry I was afraid of dropping it in the sauce LOL

9. If you aren't doing a make ahead. In the last 10 minutes of the cooking time for sauce. Start a pot of water on high for cooking the pasta. Don't forget to salt it. 

10. Cook the pasta. Turn the sauce down to low or off if it beats the pasta. When the pasta is complete, drain it and stir half of the sauce in with it. Keep the other half of sauce for topping each plate at the table. This idea was slightly messy with my bunch but I really liked the idea of making sure the noodles were coated in the large pot and not just topped with a sauce that may or may not be enough to coat it. 

11. Serve it with optional toppings typical of spaghetti or not typical such as grated parm, shredded mozzarella, shredded cheddar, finely chopped green or white raw onions, fresh chopped cilantro or parsley, pickled jalapeno slices or fresh chopped jalapenos - there is so many things that you can choose to fit your families taste buds. We served it topped with shredded mozzarella cheese. 

As you can see below.... this was a huge hit in my home. My husband was actually excited about taking leftovers for work. This one is a winner! 

Enjoy this twist to good ol' spaghetti and a relaxing weekend

From my kitchen to yours


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