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I'm a bit (...understatement...) of a YouTube junkie and lately I've really been getting into Jamie Oliver's FoodTube. Jamie and his mates around the world get back to basics and make delicious recipes in a format that is super easy to follow. One of those recipes inspired this one - and I have a feeling anyone with kids will love this one ;) IMG_4409

The Most Veggie Dense Pasta Sauce EVER

Ingredients:

  • Honestly, just grab whatever veg you have that is starting to look a bit dodgey
  • You'll want to have at least 5 or so tomatoes, halved
  • Garlic - as much as you like but it's essential for flavour
  • Chilli - optional
  • I also like using beetroot, celery, carrot, parsnip, onions, fennel, zucchini, cauliflower, peppers...
  • Spinach/kale/herbs etc
  • Olive oil
  • Good quality stock
  • Tomato paste - optional
  • Ground/minced beef, roo, chicken or turkey - optional

Method:

  • Pre-heat the oven to about 190c
  • In a baking pan, roughly chop all of the ingredients except the spinach/kale/herbs, and meat if you're using it. No need to be precious, no need to peel, just chuck them in the pan
  • Give them a good glug of olive oil (you can use coconut but I don't like how it messes with my Italiano flavourings) to coat all of the veg pieces
  • Sprinkle of salt and pepper over the whole lot, then bung it in the oven
  • Roast for about half an hour, depending on how big your veggie chunks are. Basically, until they're all soft
  • Pull the veg out of the oven and leave to cool a little (at this point, if you're using meat, I'd start browning it off in a pan)
  • Using a blender or a food processor, pop the veg into the container along with the greens and herbs (I'd suggest oregano, basil, thyme, parsley or a combination) and add a little bit of stock (but not too much, you can always add more)
  • Blitz. Add more stock if it's too thick (you want the end result to be runny, but not watery), and blitz to your desired chunkiness. Kids will probably be more likely to roll with a super smooth sauce
  • Have a taste and add more salt and pepper if you need, or add some tomato paste if it needs more tomato oomph. If you're feeling adventurous, you can add some good quality balsamic vinegar to the sauce, which will sweeten up once you start simmering it
  • Add it to the pan with the meat, or a clean pan, and simmer it down until it has thickened slightly and the flavours have come to life even more
  • Use the sauce with pasta, veg, on top of zucchini/pumpkin/carrot/sweet spud noodles or as the basis of lasagne (you can even use zucchini or sliced eggplant as your pasta sheets!)

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