Friday, July 11, 2008

spaghetti sauce

We eat spaghetti often here. C likes it with butter and cheddar cheese (yes, I know, weird, huh?) but the rest of us like it with tomato sauce. I usually stock up on the jarred sauce when it's on sale, but our pantry recently was empty of spaghetti sauce. It was $4.19/jar and I refused to pay that much! The next time I went shopping, it was $3.99/jar. Still too much!

Then I saw they had cans of tomato sauce discounted to .34! I recently saw a crockpot recipe for meat sauce and decided to try it. I bought a bunch of the cans, plus a few cans of diced tomatoes. I had 2lbs of ground beef in the freezer, and plenty of spices in the spice cabinet.

I ended up making 2 crockpots full of sauce yesterday, and thankfully they were delicious! After we ate dinner (with company), I had 16 cups of sauce to package and freeze! I'm good for spaghetti dinners for a long while now!

I packaged the extra in 2 cup portions in gallon size freezer bags. I froze them flat, so they are stacked conveniently in the freezer for our next spaghetti meal.

It was easy and the house smelled great while it was cooking all day. Want to try it for yourself? I'll cut my recipe down to make one crockpot worth!

1 medium onion
3 T minced garlic (we like garlic!)
32 oz canned tomato sauce
2 cans diced tomatoes
2 small cans tomato paste (because we like our sauce a bit thick)
1 lb lean ground beef, or ground turkey (You do not have to cook it before adding it, it'll cook perfectly in the sauce all day. But, since you're cooking it in the sauce, you want lean meat so your sauce isn't greasy/fatty.)
1 T sweet basil
1 T oregano
1 tsp salt

Dice the onion and saute in a pan with the minced garlic until the onion is golden. Place in crockpot. Add tomatoes. Add beef (or turkey) using a spoon to break up the meat through the sauce. Add the spices (adjusted for your family's taste if necessary). Turn crockpot on low and leave for 8 - 10 hours.

That's it!

Maybe you always make your own sauce and this seems simple. Well, I never made my own sauce before and it IS simple! I can't believe I always bought jarred sauce! I doubt I ever will again.

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