Sunday, September 23, 2012

No-Mess Pasta ...

This is a great, healthy one pot meal - great for families who have sporting commitments etc where you want to be able to feed a whole crew quickly on arrival home.  I think this recipe could be done in a slow cooker but probably for only 2-3 hours (eg. put on at 3pm, ready at 6pm) or it takes probably 20-30 minutes to produce on the stove top.
Assemble the ingredients: 
oil for cooking
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, diced finely (I added this to the original recipe - I figured the more veggies the better)
1 stalk celery, diced finely (ditto)
4 swiss brown mushrooms, chopped (ditto) - leave out if you don't like mushies
1 clove garlic, crushed
500 gms lean beef mince
400 gm can crushed/diced tomatoes
4 cups beef stock
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon fresh basic (8-10 leaves), plus extra to serve
375 gms small shell pasta
1 cup frozen vegetables (I used peas & corn)
parmesan cheese, to serve
Heat oil in a large non-stick saucepan or pot over medium heat.  Add onion and garlic, celery & carrot  and fry for 2-3 minutes until softened.  Add mince and cook, stirring until browned and breaking up lumps with wooden spoon.
Add tomatoes, stock, tomato paste, sugar & basil and simmer for 5 minutes.
Stir in vegetables and uncooked pasta, return to simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes or until pasta is tender.  Stir regularly.    Taste test and add salt and pepper if you like.
It's still got a little while to go, put the lid back on...
Now it's ready, the pasta has plumped up.  Just before serving, stir in 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese (or tasty cheese)...
Serve and top with a little more grated parmesan.  I bet you got back for some more!
This made a big pot of food, just right for hungry kids!
Cheers - Joolz

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