My Bubbie was notorious for her delicious recipes. She had a real talent in the kitchen and without a doubt, always managed to please each and everyone of her guests. We would always look forward to every meal that she made in her kitchen, especially her Macaroni and Cheese and 5-course breakfasts. Even the coffee that she made on the stove was memorable. One of my favourite recipes of hers is her homemade meat sauce, which contains a secret ingredient that sets it apart from all other homemade meat sauces.
It’s not that often that I eat beef but when I do, it’s usually Bubbie’s meat sauce recipe. I like to use 100% grass-fed beef, which comes from cows who have grazed in pasture year-round rather than being fed a precessed diet for much of their life. Grass feeding improves the quality of beef, and makes the beef richer in omega-3 fats, vitamin E, beta-carotene, and CLA (a beneficial fatty acid names conjugated linoleum acid). Grass-fed beef hosts a number of health benefits including immune and inflammatory system support, improved bone mass, improved blood sugar regulation, reduced body fat, reduced risk of heart attack, and maintenance of lean body mass. Grass-fed beef also contains greater amounts of vaccines acid than conventionally fed beef.
This recipe involves a lot of nurturing as it has to sit on simmer for quite a few hours. So when you do make this recipe make sure to have a few hours of the day to babysit the sauce. Believe me, once it’s ready, the hours of babysitting and patiently waiting to dig in will be completely worth it. To add a little modern flair to the recipe, I served the meat sauce with spaghetti squash and brown rice pasta noodles. You can also use barley as a grain option as well.
- 1 onion
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- 1 tsp. coconut sugar
- 2 tsp. oregano
- 2 tsp. basil
- 1 tsp. thyme
- 2 tsp. rosemary
- 1/2 tsp. chili flakes (optional)
- 1-2 cinnamon sticks — secret ingredient!!
- 1 lb. grass-fed beef
- 1 800mL can diced tomatoes
- 1 800mL can crushed tomatoes
How to Make:
- Sauté 1 onions in oil
- Lower heat slightly, add the spices and garlic to sautéd onions, and cook until fragrant and bubbly
- In a separate pan, cook 1 lb. of minced meat until redness disappears.
- If meat is extra fatty, you can drain meat in colander to get rid of excess fat and add to pan
- Add approximately 1 800mL can of diced tomatoes to pot.
- Cook until tomatoes are softened and juice thickens
- Add 1-2 cinnamon sticks
- Add approximately 1 800mL can of crushed tomatoes
- Cook at medium to low heat, stirring frequently and adjusting the heat so that the heat is not so high as to cause the sauce to splatter or stick to the bottom of the pot, but not so low that the sauce is not warming
- Once small bubbles start to appear at the top of the pot and the sauce is hot through the entire pot, lower the heat enough to just maintain those small bubbles. Any hotter and the bottom might burn
- Cover the pot and let simmer for several hours, stirring occasionally
- When ready to eat, prepare a package of noodles (as per the package instructions) or spaghetti squash (by baking spaghetti squash in a pan with 1 inch of water for 30 minutes at 375 degrees). Scrape out spaghetti squash with a spoon when ready.
*I find that the flavours, especially the secret ingredient of cinnamon sticks, really come out when it is left over night and enjoyed the next day. Since this recipe takes a while to make, it is worthwhile to make enough for the freezer. This recipe can be tripled for plenty of future meals.