As I’ve mentioned this week and over on my photo diary blog The Monkee Diaries, my car’s been on the fritz lately. I finally got it to the mechanic, but it’s been rough getting meals together. I had some ingredients to work with throughout the week, but wound up with a pound of ground beef, pasta, an onion, garlic and a few other things around the house. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with these things, but then the idea hit me to whip up a meat sauce thanks to some V8 juice in the fridge!
That first picture has a few more things than I actually used while making the pasta. I wound up skipping the cumin and Chinese Five Spice that you can see in the background of the picture. I grabbed more than I needed before I really know what I was going to make. Anyway, I started off getting the water on the boil and then cooking the chopped onion and garlic in olive oil in a pan. Once those looked translucent, I dropped the ground beef in there and browned it. While the beef cooked, I added some Worcestershire sauce. I’m not sure if that did anything, but it was in there! I also added salt, pepper and garlic powder.
After the meat was browned, I drained the grease into a cup into the sink. I got the pan back on the heat and poured a good deal of V8 juice in, probably a cup or two. I didn’t measure it up, but poured until there was a pretty good deal in there, enough to see. I wanted the sauce to be a little saucy and not turn into taco meat. I also mixed in a few liberal shakes of dried basil, parsley and oregano to add some more Italian elements. While that was heating up, I looked over and saw the bottle of Pinot Noir I had on my counter and poured a tablespoon or two of that in. This really helped bring the sauce together. It tasted pretty good before, but with that in there it reminded me of the meat sauce my mom used to make before she became a vegetarian. It definitely classed things up a bit.
I have to say, I’m pretty proud of myself for cobbling this meal together. I’ve been following recipes for a while now, so it was nice to know that I’ve got some good instincts when it came to flavor and seasoning. Plus, it tasted pretty dang good!