With the spaghetti bolognse extravaganza in this month’s Australian Gourmet Traveller out and about, I’ve been inspired to share my Mum’s version this week. The dish that gave me a deep love for the comforts of pasta and one of the things that gave me massive respect for my Mum’s cooking, especially when I got to boarding school and tasted the poor excuse for spag bol dished up by the nuns.
While vermicelli (very thin spaghetti) was the most common accompaniment to this meat sauce, it was also the base for Mum’s delicious lasagne. Occasionally leftovers would be used for a quick lunch served on top of toast with a handful of cheese and a quick spin under the grill.
Â 2T olive oil
Â 750g (1 2/3lbs) minced beef (ground beef)
Â 1 large brown onion, peeled & diced
Â 500g (18oz) jar commercial tomato pasta sauce
Â 1T Worcestershire sauce
Â 2t crushed garlic
Â 1t dried oregano leaves or small handful fresh oregano
Â 1t marjoram leaves or small handful fresh marjoram, optional
Â 1t Basil leaves or large handful fresh basil leaves
Â 500g (1lb) vermicelli or spaghetti
Â parmesan cheese, to serve, optional
Place oil, beef and onion in a large frying pan and cook over a high heat stirring regularly until the meat has browned and the onion is soft.Â
Add the pasta sauce, Worcestershire sauce, garlic and herbs. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Cook for approximately 30 minutes, stirring occasionally until sauce has reduced and thickened.
Cook pasta as per the packet directions. Drain and divide between plates and top with a generous amount of the meat sauce.
Serve immediately with cheese passed separately if using.