In my house, I do almost all of the cooking and I don't mind saying, I don't really like to cook! A favorite and easy dinner that everyone loves is Spaghetti. That's why it was so ironic that when I took Carrabba's Pasta Personality Quiz on Facebook and the result came up as me being a Spaghetti. Here's a screen capture of the result.
I don't know that I would describe myself as warm and comforting, but I would have to say that I am as easy going as Spaghetti, perhaps a bit noodley, and definitely saucy at times! I can be a total meatball when I'm in a goofy mood too. But one thing I don't do is the "spaghetti vacuum"... I leave that to the kids.So what do I mean about easy? When I cook spaghetti around here, I like to make it 3/4 hamburger, 1/4 mild sausage because I like it to have just a slightly sausagy taste, without overpowering the hamburger. I have experimented with this and this ratio is what I and my family like best.
I fry the sausage and hamburger, taking care to drain out the grease and even pat the meat with paper towels to squeeze out the excess grease. I want that meat to soak up the flavor of the two jars of pasta sauce I have begun to warm. The spaghetti sauce tastes the best if it is left to simmer for an extended period of time, such as 2-3 hours. If I'm in too much of a hurry, the meat doesn't have the chance to fully soak up into the sauce and the my meal will taste like I'm eating meat with pasta sauce on it, rather than having the sauce and the meat share the same flavor.
After the sauce has been simmering for a while, I start start my gluten free Tinkyada noodles about a half an hour before I plan to eat, making sure I cook them half way through before I cook my husband's favorite Angel Hair pasta, which only takes 4 minutes to cook. When both pastas are cooked, drained, and rinsed, it is time to re-warm them with some of that fabulous pasta sauce!
We ladle it on top of our chosen spaghetti, versus dumping it all in one pot and mixing it up like my mom did when I was a child. The kids and hubby love their spaghetti with some freshly baked garlic bread. Spaghetti is a quick and not too time-intensive dinner and I just love that!
Leftovers get frozen, with some cheese on top. The next time I need an easy meal, I'll prepare baked spaghetti! Speaking of which.... that's what we're having for dinner tonight!
What's your Pasta Personality? Take the Carrabba's Pasta Personality Quiz on Facebook and come back and tell me if you're a Spaghetti like me, or if you're some other scrumptious pasta dish!
Carrabba’s Signature Pasta Meals and New Limited Time Offers
Signature Pasta Meals, featuring seven distinctive dishes served with choice of soup or fresh salad starting at $10. There’s no better place than Carrabba’s to enjoy a complete Italian meal – any day of the week.
LIMITED TIME OFFERS: Now through July 2011.
Featured Signature Pasta Meal:
Pasto Rambo – Named for the chef who created it, it’s made with shrimp tossed with imported Italian linguine, spinach, mushrooms, and tomatoes sautéed in our basil lemon butter sauce. Lobster is available instead of shrimp for an additional cost.
Other Limited Time Offers:
Parmesan-crusted Chicken – Topped with fresh arugula and grape tomatoes tossed in a hand-prepared lemon vinaigrette, served with choice of side. Substitution of wood-grilled chicken also available. Pairs well with Estancia Pinot Grigio.
Prosciutto-Wrapped Pork Tenderloin – Three pork tenderloin medallions wrapped with prosciutto, wood-grilled and topped with an apple and fig infused port wine sauce, served with the vegetable of the day. Pairs well with Coppola Pinot Noir.
Limoncello Bread Pudding – Back by popular demand! Brioche bread pudding made with fresh Madagascar vanilla beans and a rich custard, served hot out of the oven. Topped with Blue Bell vanilla ice cream and drizzled with Carrabba’s homemade Caravella Limoncello liqueur sauce.
Peach Sangria – Carrabba’s new light and fruity Peach Sangria blends Copper Ridge White Zinfandel, Absolut Apeach vodka and Patrón Citrónge with a splash of citrus. Topped with a fresh lemon wedge and strawberry, it’s a taste of the Amalfi Coast in spring.
Locations: Visit www.carrabbas.com for the closest Carrabba’s location. There are more than 230 locations nationwide.
Johnny Carrabba and Damian Mandola founded the first Carrabba’s Italian Grill in 1986 in Houston, Texas. Today, there are 232 Carrabba’s Italian Grill locations around the country, run by passionate local proprietors focused on delighting guests with fresh, made-to-order Italian cuisine and the ultimate dining experience. Carrabba’s serves dinner seven nights a week in a casual environment that pairs innovative dishes and a complementary wine list with abundant hospitality. For on-the-go guests, Carrabba’s also offers convenient Carside Carry-Out. To learn more about Carrabba’s, please visit www.carrabbas.com.
Carrabba’s Pasta Personality Quiz on Facebook - Take the quiz to see how your personality compares to some of Carrabba’s signature pasta dishes! http://www.facebook.com/Carrabbas?sk=app_142632109083371
Follow Carrabba’s on Twitter: @Carrabba’s
Carrabba’s on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Carrabbas
Disclosure: I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Carrabba’s blogging program, for a gift card worth $50. For more information on how you can participate, click here.