Spaghetti and meatballs are recognized by most in my neck of the woods as the ultimate comfort food. While it’s true I live in a very multicultural city where many turn to all sorts of other foods in times of need, at my house spaghetti and meatballs is THE go to food. But the way I used to make them was just so much work. Consequently, they were a rare occurrence. So, imagine my relief when I came across a post by Shannon Johanson @CentLessMeals and saw that I was doing it all wrong. It really can be pretty easy to pull together a delicious pot of yummy comfort. And, I’ve done it again and again since.
The general concept is dead easy. Make some meatballs or, buy some already made, cover them in your favourite sauce for a couple of hours in a slowcooker then, spread a handful of spaghetti on top and cover it with a cup of beef stock for another hour. When it’s ready, carefully stir some shredded Parmesan cheese into the sauce, gradually stirring up the meatballs. Top everything with fresh chopped parsley and serve. It comes together in minutes, cooks while you take care of other more pressing issues and, it’s delicious!
Something else I like about this approach is that it lead me to another important Veteran Move. By cooking everything in a single crockpot you end up stirring everything together before serving which turns out to be the best way to serve pasta and any sauce. I really had been doing it all wrong! The first time I made this I marveled at how great it tasted and what an amazing texture the finished dish had.
Called emulsifying, you should always stir your pasta into your sauce as it is still cooking and allow the starches in the pasta to partially release and cook right into the sauce. Then, the sauce will more effectively cling to the pasta. For years I had spooned sauce on top and then served it leaving my victims to stir it up themselves. And, I’ll confess, I also usually rinsed the pasta first before serving… GASP! Don’t do it that way! Drain the pasta water off the pasta (maybe keep a cup or so of the water to thin out a too thick sauce without affecting the ‘cling’) and stir everything together right at the end. It’s the Italian way and they do it that way for good reason.
Or, do it Easy Slowcooker Spaghetti and Meatballs style and cook your pasta on top of the sauce then stir everything together at the end. I promise you’ll be glad you did.
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Try this recipe. If you like it… even if you don’t… please comment, let’s talk about it!
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