This version of marinara meat sauce is something I have perfected. It was one of the first dishes I could make without a recipe in front of me. Its wonderfully hearty and is something I can make very easily without much thought. It was hard writing the recipe out for this because I never use one! I think I got the amounts down pat, but if you decide to try this recipe I encourage you to add things like herbs, cheese or even vegetables. This is a great sauce to use for other recipes also, like lasagna or chicken parmesan (I just leave out the meat).
Pasta with Simple Meat Sauce
16 oz. pkg of your favorite noodles (my favorite is Penne Rigate)
1 Lb. Ground Beef
1-2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 shallot or small onion, chopped
6 oz. can tomato paste
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (DRAINED)
3/4 - 1 cup red wine (I use Yellow Tail Merlot but again use whatever is your favorite)
24 oz. jar of pasta sauce (now you can use any pasta sauce you like, but I highly recommend Barilla. I found other brands were too sweet for my liking)
Basil (dried or fresh)
Salt and Pepper
Heat saute pan to medium-high heat. Brown ground beef. Season with salt, pepper and dried basil. Once no longer pink, drain and set aside.
Heat large saucepan or pot over medium heat. Add tbsp of olive oil and swirl to cover bottom of pan. Add garlic and shallots. Saute until just beginning to turn brown. Add tomato paste and cook for about 3 minutes. Add diced, drained, tomatoes and red wine. Cook wine mixture down for about 5 minutes. Add jar of sauce and cooked beef. Season with salt and pepper and dried basil (if using fresh basil wait until after simmering to add it). Lower heat to medium-low, let simmer for about 30 minutes.
While sauce is simmering, bring a pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add a handful of salt and pasta. Cook according to instructions on package.
Top cooked pasta with meat sauce, a few leaves of basil or parsley and enjoy!