Monday, August 15, 2011

Spaghetti with "Spicy" Turkey Meat Sauce

There's nothing like a 30 minute meal.  There's a reason Rachael Ray has made millions creating recipes that could be made in that amount of time, though there's this weird backlash against her for her personality.  I dunno, I like her (most of the time). 

So when looking to fill my meal plan for the week, I turned this time around to Rachael's weekly meal planner, and came up with Turkey Meat Sauce.  It just happened to coincide with an ENORMOUS craving for meat sauce.

While a turkey meat sauce didn't quite fill that craving (because how could it possibly compare to a rich, restaurant prepared meal, which probably uses veal, pork, and beef?), it was quite delicious, AS I MADE IT.

I trusted Rachael, and returned the can of crushed tomatoes I'd brought up from the basement back downstairs in exchange for diced tomatoes.  But then I stirred them in, and this was NOT a sauce for pasta.  So I went back to my gut, and made a much more saucier sauce, with some nice chunks thanks to the diced tomatoes.  I added in lots of fresh basil, a teensy bit of crushed red pepper, some Italian seasoning, another clove of garlic, and came out with a pretty tasty sauce for which I could pat myself on the back as my own sort of creation.

I enjoyed this one a LOT.  E enjoyed this even more, eating at least three servings.  A barely touched it (though at least he didn't call it "spicy," considering I barely added any crushed pepper!), and M said it was "Not bad" (almost six years of marriage, and I'm still not used to that dig/compliment--it totally depends on his tone of voice, which makes it even more frustrating).

Spaghetti with Spicy Turkey Meat Sauce adapted from Rachael Ray
15 30 45


  • 1 pound whole wheat spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Two 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes
  • One 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil
  • 1T Italian seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving


  1. In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the pasta according to package directions until al dente; drain, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking water.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat; add the onion and cook until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Increase the heat to medium-high, crumble in the turkey, season with salt and black pepper and cook until the turkey is just no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and spicesand cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 15 minutes. Stir in the parsley and cheese.
  3. Toss the pasta with the sauce and 1/2 cup reserved pasta cooking water, adding more water to thin the consistency, if desired. Serve immediately with more cheese.

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