Friday, February 18, 2011

Penne Pasta with Kicked Up 'Meat' Sauce

I've been eating a lot of pasta lately: it's cheap and filling and easy to make. However, I can easily get in a rut with pasta. I love Newman's Own pasta sauce, but just red sauce and pasta can get old.

I thought for a bit how to kick up the red sauce I had in the house. After a moment or two, I came up with a plan and began. (No real measurements, but the next time I do this I'll get more specific.)

1 jar Newman's Own Cabernet Marinara (or any red sauce you like)
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 med-large onion, small dice
.75c TVP (crumbles, dry)
1 can vegetable broth
fennel seeds (1T I think?)
1/2 package fresh spinach

I started by sauteeing the onion and then the garlic. I added fennel seeds to the mix, to saute and toast them a little. I added some salt, then poured a little of the veggie broth in and let everything simmer for a minute or so. I added the jar of sauce, stirring everything together. I kept adding veggie broth to thin out the sauce and prevent the pre-seasoned red sauce from super-concentrating in flavor.

I added TVP, stirring and allowing it to hydrate in the sauce to soak up the flavors. I then added the spinach and turned off the heat, stirring until the spinach had adequately cooked in the sauce.

Pour over pasta of choice and enjoy!

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