A firm family favourite for fifteen felicitous years and more. I’ve been serving this dish up since Mrs S and I got together, and while it has gone through a number of iterations, has always remained the one recipe the kids ask after when they come visiting.
Makes enough for six to eight robust portions
1lb(ish) Cooking onions (450-500gm)
1lb(ish) full fat minced beef
1lb(approx) Canned crushed tomatoes
Worcester sauce (Splash of) Lea and Perrins for preference
2 cloves (Segments of a bulb) crushed garlic or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Olive oil (A splodge or dessert spoonful, either will do)
Balsamic vinegar (hearty splash of or 1 bottle cap full)
1/2 teaspoon Crushed Chilli flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Pasta (About half a cupful per person serving is about right)
Four pints water (Just under 2 litres)
Grated Parmesan cheese
Put Olive oil in large saucepan. Chop onion(s) up small and sweat over low heat until soft and translucent. Then add minced beef and mix into softened onions turning up heat a notch. When meat is cooked, (thoroughly grey with the fat liquefying) add garlic or powder. Mix in thoroughly. Add crushed chilli flakes, Stir. Leave to cook for five minutes. Add a splash (Bottle cap full) of balsamic vinegar to break down the fat, then a swift shake of Worcestershire sauce to give it an edge. Stir. Add can of crushed tomatoes (Contents only, open the can first, really) , or even a pound of liquidised plum tomatoes if that’s what’s in the larder. This softens the texture and gives the dish a nice tomatoey edge. Stir and leave to simmer while you prepare your pasta.
Pasta is dead easy. Ideally you need a big deep saucepan that can hold over an imperial gallon. Put in the water, bring to boil, throw in pasta. Boil until preferred softness for Spaghetti, Linguine, Penne or whatever pasta you like is reached. Add a quick splash of Olive Oil and stir before draining in a sieve or taking out of pan and draining. The purpose of which is to stop the pasta sticking together prior to serving.
Add meat and tomato sauce over pasta, add a brief shake of grated Parmesan. Serve. Bask in adulation or indifference. I’ve yet to serve this and have plates returned with leftovers.