My father once told me, "Son, if you want to know the easy way to win a woman's heart, learn how to cook one thing very well and cook it on an important date." This advice was quite true, and has proven itself time and time again. His special recipe is a lasagna that weighs in at between ten and fifteen pounds depending on how big the pan is. I learned how he makes it, but decided that this would not be my special recipe. I thought long and hard about how exactly I would win a woman's heart when I had little time to prep and less time to actually cook.
My mother was making her sauce one night, which is arguably her signature dish on special occasions, and it hit me that this was definitely the recipe to nab woman's hearts near and far! It was perfect, a dish that takes about half an hour to prep and prepare, that gets better the longer it simmers. Tonight, I am preparing this dish.
Why is it called geek sauce? Well it's simple, cheap, and gives you time to get back to your computer! It has basic ingredient and can be seasoned to your specific pallet. Here is what's in it...
1/2 large onion (Chopped)
1/2 big green bell pepper (Chopped)
1 1/2 pounds ground meat (This can be beef, turkey, or a vegetarian variation thereof)
2 cloves garlic (Garlic powder will do if you hate crushing and mincing garlic yourself. Freshness pays off)
1 cup sliced mushrooms (Fresh is best, but I found dehydrated mushrooms work well.)
1 can tomato paste or sauce (Depending on pallet)
1 can tomatoes (chili style or Italian depending on your preference)
Red Pepper or Emeril's Essence
First, you want to brown the meat and sweat the onions. You can do this at the same time, but give the meat a chance to get about half-way brown before adding the onions to the pot. This will give the onions plenty of time to sweat and become transparent before you add other ingredients.
After the meat is brown and the onions are sufficiently sweated, add the bell peppers to the pot and stir liberally while keeping the temperature on high. Do this until the meat is broken up in to smaller bits and you are convinced the peppers are hot. At this point season the pot with garlic, salt, pepper, and a dash of red pepper or Emeril's Essence. Stir for another few minutes. This makes sure the meat and veggies keep some of the seasoning on them throughout the cooking process.
Add the tomato ingredients, both of them. Stir liberally and add the mushrooms and Italian seasoning. At this point you need to bring it to a good bubble, which shouldn't take but a minute or two, and reduce heat to simmer. Let it simmer for at least ten minutes before serving. The longer it simmers the better the sauce will get!
(Added: Psst, this is a PASTA sauce primarily, however you can use it for a number of inventive things.)
This post was originally written for MattRyan.TV