Spaghetti is one of those comfort foods I grew up with, so of course I think others must have too. Obviously, that’s not true ~ everyone has their comfort food recipes they grew up with, and I’d love to hear about some of yours. The recipe below is never constant, it’s hard when you make something so often to be rigid with ingredients, amounts, etc. So when you make this think about what flavors you like in combination with ‘Italian’ seasonings, pasta, and a tomato base.
2 tbsp olive oil 1 large yellow or white onion, small dice ½ bulb garlic, diced 6 medium carrots, sliced into rounds 24 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced ½ kabocha squash, peeled & diced 3 15-oz cans of diced tomatoes 1 6-0zcan tomato paste 1 tbsp oregano 2 tsp basil ½ tsp thyme 2 tsp garlic granules Kosher salt & red pepper flakes to taste ½-1 cup water, approximately 1 package of whole wheat spaghetti noodles
Heat olive oil in large stock pot over medium low heat. Add onion and saute for several minutes, allowing it to become soft and translucent. Add the garlic and stir, allowing it to cook for about 4 minutes. Add the vegetables and allow to cook for about 15 minutes, stirring periodically. Then add the can of tomato paste, mixing to coat the vegetables. Add the tomatoes without draining the water from the can. Then add water until the sauce is the consistency you like. I like a greater amount of sauce to veggie ratio, whereas Granola (my other half) likes a lighter coating of sauce over the veggies and noodles. It all just depends on what your taste is. If you go overboard with the water, you can always throw another couple tablespoons of tomato paste in and thicken it up. Just remember if you do that you’ll have to adjust the seasonings, too. After you have the right consistency of veggies, sauce, and tomatoes, add seasonings. Here I give amounts for those that like structure, but you really can play with the seasonings to get the taste you want. If you like super garlicky spaghetti, throw more of that in. If you want really spicy spaghetti, go wild with the red pepper flakes. Allow sauce to simmer on low for about 30 minutes, or until the veggies are tender but firm and the flavors have melded. Spoon over noodles, top with parmesean if you choose, and serve!
What are your family favorites, or the best comfort food you recall from childhood? We’d love to hear about them.