January 11: Paleo Pasta

Big bowl of pasta, paleo style. Recipe below, really.

Big bowl of pasta, paleo style. Recipe below, really.

One of the biggest things that people freak out about not getting to eat when one “goes” “paleo” is pasta. Honestly, I haven’t been a big wheat eater for ages. I come from a family of people with Celiac, and I am wildly sensitive to grains in general…..  so, as much as I love pasta, I eat it very rarely. But I do love it. There’s something about a big, hot, steamy bowl of saucy goopy pasta that is undeniably comforting. And we eat A LOT of it. Sort of.

My daughter calls it “gagaboo.” I have no idea why. But really, it’s a pretty classic Bolognese. I just serve it over Spaghetti Squash instead of grain-based noodles. I make a giant pot of it, roast half a dozen squash, and we have it as leftovers for a week, which makes my life easier. 

According to everyone who was here tonight, tonight’s batch was the best I’ve ever made. Which kinda sucks because I never use recipes and don’t have much of a clue what I did differently, except that I used mostly pork this time.

1 lb spicy pork sausage
1 lb ground pork
1 lb ground beef (the highest fat content that Whole Foods had.)
Roughly 5 big carrots
Probably 4 or 5 celery stalks
I’m guessing an onion and a half
The better part of a head of garlic
Great gobs of red wine
3 BIG cans of fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
1 SMALL can of tomato paste
More rosemary than most people think is rational
8 or so bay leaves, but really, if I had more, I’d put more in. Love that shit.

*I HATE basil in pasta sauce. It’s too bright and perfumey and something of a bully. It just takes over things and I think clashes with the earthier flavors of Rosemary and Bay, which I adore. I can handle oregano, but I find it add a slightly stale and predictable flavor that I just don’t like. I think it hamstrings the punch or Rosemary and undermines the base note of bay. So, no basil. Basil gets its own things, solo. 

  • First, through all veggies in a food processor until they’re uniformly small and mealy.
  • Then brown them down in a big pot until they’re all sweaty and condensed.
  • Then add in all the meat and brown it down until it’s mostly cooked.
  • Once that stuff is all cooked, pour in red wine until it almost covers the stuff in the pot, and cook it down until it doesn’t any more, and it stops smelling like wine.
  • Dump in all the tomato action and mix it all up.

Cook it all as long as you want to. The longer the better. Tonight’s went the length of the Golden Globes, and was fantastic.

Spaghetti squash is easy. Cut it in half, roast it, face down, on a cookie sheet in a 400 degree oven until the skin easily gives under the pressures of your fingertips. The skin itself will still be crunchy, but you’ll feel your fingers push in…..

Scoop out the spaghetti squash and laugh about how obviously, and correctly, it is named. Pour sauce over the top in the obvious way. I put sautéed shrooms and fresh parsley all over it, because my husband is wrong about mushrooms tasting like feet.

I tend to serve things like this with a tart salad of greens rather than lettuce. Tonight I made an awesome salad dressing with yuzu juice and mustard seed – and olive oil. So bright on top of the tart Yuzu. Good stuff!

And all 100% Whole 30 compliant.

I get an extra joy in filling my family with such comforting food that is so good for their bodies.

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