Cooking when you have a police officer in the family can be difficult! Even if you are fortunate enough to have your officer on a day time schedule the chances that he will actually get to eat dinner with you and the family are rare. My officer, Officer Hottie, works day shift but still doesn't get home until about two hours after we've eaten dinner so the meals I make need to taste good cold (as he is usually starving the second he walks in the door) and reheated (since I try to make enough to send with him to work the next day).


I hope you can find some meals here that your family will enjoy as much as ours.
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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I-don't-feel-like-making-meatballs Spaghetti Sauce

Here's the deal in our house. Meat. Meat is the deal. Especially when it comes in some sort of shaped mountainous form. Such as meatballs. Or meatloaf. Or meat patties. Whatever shape you can think of, my family loves it. Especially Officer Hottie.

Me: What should I make for dinner this week?
OH: Meatballs.
Me: Got it.
OH: Meatloaf.
Me: Got it.
OH: Did I already say meatballs?

And every time I make spaghetti without meatballs this is the conversation we have ...

OH: What's for dinner?
Me: Spaghetti.
OH: With meatballs?
Me: No. Just spaghetti with meat.
OH: You mean meatballs.
Me: Is this where I lie to make you happy?
OH: I don't think you heard me when I said meatballs.
Me: (Hang up phone)

Today I am in a very not so interested in shaping meat with my bare hands kind of mood. So, Officer Hottie, you are still going to get the meat, it just won't be balled up. I'm sure you can deal. Even though I know you're pouting.

You will need ...

1 lb ground turkey
1 lb Italian turkey sausage
(Using ground beef and regular sausage is just fine, and also, rather delicious. We're just trying to lose weight so we've had to make some sacrifices. If I were making meatballs, OH wouldn't even notice. Alas, he'll notice.)
A handful of chopped celery leaves
1/2 onion, diced
garlic
2 (26 oz) cans diced tomatoes
1 12 oz can tomato paste
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
2 bay leaves
1 T garlic powder
1 T onion powder
2 T oregano
2 T basil
1 T salt
1 T pepper
1 T sugar
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper




In a large pan, pour a little olive oil and a little butter in. Heat it up over medium heat.



Add the onion, garlic and celery leaves. Cook them until they are soft and transparent, about five minutes.


Add the ground turkey and the Italian turkey sausage. Crumble it up as it cooks. Cook it until it is all browned and cooked through.

While the meat is cooking take all your tomatoes, sauce and paste and dump them into a crock pot.
Take all your spices and put them into a small bowl. Or not. You can put them directly into the sauce. But I like to make dishes dirty. I know I said to use 1 T of pepper and 1/4 tsp of crushed red pepper but this makes for a fairly spicy sauce. I like it that way, and so does OH, but the kids aren't huge fans. You can always omit the crushed red pepper and use less pepper to make it less spicy. You may also want to adjust the amount of spices in the sauce to your own taste. I like a more savory type of sauce with lots of oomph. Maybe you don't? Adjust it so you will enjoy it!


Add the spices to the sauce. 
Mix it with a wire whisk. I like how the whisk incorporates everything so well. I seem to get chunks of spices if I don't use a whisk. Maybe it's just me.


Now add the meat. Yup ... it's been awhile since I've cleaned the outside of my crock pot. My grandma gave it to me and would be horrified.


And here's how unprofessional I am. I forgot to take pictures of the final product. Go figure. BUT it's good. This makes about 20 1-cup servings. It is hearty and delicious and is good for your heart. That statement has not been approved by the FDA. 

I started putting recipes on Recipe Zaar in order to make printing them a bit easier. Here is the link for this recipe. Enjoy!


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