Thick and Rich Spaghetti Sauce
a Greg Ratajik original.
This is a very thick spaghetti sauce that I've developed over time.   It's based on both of my Grandmothers Spaghetti Sauce's, plus  a bit of my mothers.  Many people are surprised by how hardy this meat sauce is.  It's almost as thick as chili sauce, yet is definitely Spaghetti.  This sauce can be served on any type of pasta, or can be used in other dishes (It's perfect for my as the base sauce in my Lasagna!)

  • 2 Cans Stewed Tomatoes
  • 8 oz Fresh Portallbela Mushrooms
  • 8 oz Canned mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 Chopped Onion
  • 1 Can tomato Sauce
  • 4 oz Tomato Paste OR
  • Optional: Grandma Denes Chili Sauce (in place of tomato paste)
  • 5 tbs. Garlic Powder
  • 1 tbs Sugar
  • Meat seasoning (Lowry)

Grind the beef (skip this part if using pre-bought).

Meatloaf - Sliced beef
You can use whatever grind you want.  For this batch, I ended up using 1/3 brisket, 1/3 beef short ribs, and 1/3 New York strip. Slice the meat into thin strips.
Meatloaf - Seasoned beef
Season with the Lawry's and parsley, and then put in the freezer for 30 minutes, or until the surface is slightly frozen (this makes it easier to grind)
Meatloaf - Griding Beef
Use your grinders directions.  I use a Kitchen Stand Mixer with the Grinder Attachment.
Meatloaf - Ground beef
I used the coarse grinder attachment for the first pass, and then ground 1/2 of the already ground beef with the fine attachment. I then ground 1/2 of that 4 more times with the fine attachment. This will give the sauce a bit of a different texture - a nice blend of tender, moist beef and some more chunky.

Making the sauce

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Place hamburger, onion, and finely chopped mushroom in frying pan.   Sprinkle a bit of garlic and some Lowry sauce on it.  Cook on med-high heat until hamburger is cooked through.  Use spatchula to chop hamburger up as it cooks
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Put stewed tomatoes in kettle. If you want a less chunking sauce, crush by hand (just squeeze it a bit). Add tomato sauce, mushrooms, and the cooked hamburger mixture into kettle. If using Grandma Denes Chili sauce, replace for equal amount of tomatoes paste
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Add at least 1 can of water for each can of tomato sauce added. If you want a thicker, richer sauce, add more water. This will increase the cooking time, but the sauce will be better.
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Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, and simmer until cooked down, stirring as needed.

(The amount you cook this down depends on how thick you want it.  I generally want very thick sauce, so will cook it down to about where it was before adding the water.  For a even richer sauce, cook all the way down and then add more water, cooking down again.)

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The final sauce should be thick, rich, and fairly moist.
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Serve with your favorite pasta.   I generally use Angle Hair or Vermicelli.
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One option I enjoy is adding very finely chopped fresh green pepper and cooking the sauce 5 more minutes. I normally don't like green pepper a lot, as it tends to take over a dish - but in this case it can add a nice fresh flavor to the sauce.