National Spaghetti Day- January 4, 2012

One meal I remember from my childhood is spaghetti.  Skinny noodles, with jarred red sauce and cooked ground meat sprinkled with Parmesan cheese right from the green can and garlic bread that you cooked in the foil bag.  I miss that garlic bread.

Spaghetti was a staple meal in our house, as I am sure it is in many households.  The ingredients are cheap, and the meal is filling.  Any meat can be added or left out entirely for a vegetarian dish.  Here are two recipes for you to try, one traditional sauce, and one not-so-traditional spaghetti recipe!

Quick Tomato Sauce

This recipe makes enough for about one pound of pasta. High quality canned tomatoes will make a big difference in this sauce( Muir Glen). Grate onion on the large holes of a box grater.

2 TBSP unsalted butter

¼ cup grated onion

¼ tsp dried oregano


2 medium garlic cloves, minced

1(28-oz) can crushed tomatoes

¼ tsp sugar

2 TBSP chopped fresh basil leaves

1 TBSP olive oil

Black pepper

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, oregano, and ½ tsp salt; cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated and the onion is golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the tomatoes and sugar; bring to a simmer over high heat. Lower the heat to medium-low and simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Off the heat, stir in the basil and oil; season with salt and pepper to taste. Makes about 3 cups.

Spaghetti with Zucchini

1 pound zucchini, cut into thin sticks

12 ounces spaghetti

3 TBSP olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 cup heavy cream

3/4 cup grated Cheddar or Gruyere cheese


Cook the zucchini in plenty of salted boiling water for 2 minutes, then drain and refresh under cold running water.  Set aside in a clean dishtowel to dry.  Cook the spaghetti as directed on package.  Meanwhile heat the oil in a skillet.  Add the zucchini and onin and cook over low  heat, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutees.  Stir in the lemon juice.  Drain the spaghetti well and add it to the pan.  Stir in the cream, season to taste with salt and serve immediately, offering the cheese seperately.  Serves 4.



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