Cheat’s Pasta and Meatballs with Arrabbiata Style Sauce

Arrabbiata Sauce is a spicy Italian sauce made with tomatoes, garlic and olive oil. Some variations will have onions, basil, parsley, sometimes even capers.
Arrabbiata means “angry” in Italian. So All’arrabbiata can be translated to “angry style” referring to the spiciness of the sauce. It’s an awesome sauce for chilli junkies like me.
Anyway, this dish is a quite easy to make. Im not gonna bother with getting mince and making the meatballs from scratch. I’m cheating by using cut sausages. All you need is some good quality sausages (the coarser the better). I went for some Lincolnshire pork sausages. (Because they’re infused with herbs and that imparts more flavour to the dish than standard sausages)
Serves 4
Prep and Cooking time 30mins 
1 Packet of good quality sausages (4 to 6 sausages cut in 3 to 4 pieces each)
1 British red Chilli thinly diced
1 Red or Yellow Pepper (Capsicum)  diced into big cubes. 
1 Medium sized onion finely chopped (optional)
2 to 3 Cloves of garlic crushed/ finely diced
1 tin of chopped tomatoes (optional)
1 teaspoon of smoked paprika (optional)
1 tablespoon tomato puree (optional)
1 bunch of basil for garnish
1 teaspoon of dried Italian herbs
2 tablespoon Olive Oil
Pasta of your choice (I prefer penne pasta for this one)
Step 1: Heat a tiny bit of oil in the pan and sauté the sausages so that they a little firm and wont break apart when cooked later. Set aside once they are slightly browned on all sides.
Step 3: Use the same pan and (the juices from the sausages will add more flavour to the dish) sauté the onions, garlic, chillies, and pepper, once they soft, add in the tinned tomatoes. Let it bubble for a few minutes, stir in tomato puree, add in the paprika, and dried herbs. Add in the sausages and let it simmer at low it till the sausages are fully cooked. Cook longer if you want the sauce to be a little thicker and reduced. 
Step 4: Cook the pasta as per the instructions on the packet, once done drain and mix it in to the sauce, add salt and pepper to taste and garnish with Basil.
Serve with some grated Parmesan if you want.
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Simple Pasta with Chorizo

Remember that chorizo omelette I made recently? See Lunch ideas at work. I’m using the spare chorizo for a quick and easy pasta dish. You can drop in some chopped tomatoes and mild chilies to give this dish a slight “Arrabbiata” style twist if you want 

Cooking time: 20 mins


Pasta for two (penne, spaghetti, fusilli or any orther pasta can be used)

2 cloves of garlic crushed/diced finely

2 tablespoons of Olive oil

½ Onion thinly diced

Salt and Pepper to taste

Basil to taste

Chorizo slices (as much as you want!)

Step 1: Cook the pasta as per the instructions on the packet. In a separate pan, heat olive oil and sauté the onion and garlic. Once the onions are soft, drop in the Chorizo and sauté for a few minutes. The chorizo slices will start to release some of its lovely red oils. This will give the dish some color. Don’t let the chorizo to crisp to much. We want some moisture in them. At this point you could add the optional chilies followed by chopped tomatoes (tinned is fine). Or you could just remove them from the heat keep it simple.

Step 2: Once the pasta is cooked, drain them. Toss the pasta in a teaspoon of butter or olive oil and mix them with the cooked chorizo. Add basil, slat and pepper to taste and you’re ready to go.

Tip: Chopped parsley instead of Basil works well with this dish as well. You could also add some shaved parmesan or some other strong white cheese for more flavor.  This is a quick and easy meal to make if you’re rushing or just don’t have much time in the kitchen.

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Minimize summer spending

Try minimizing expenditure on food and drinks on your days out in the summer. Buying food and drinks on summer days out can be expensive. Try taking a packed lunch with you. Get the kids involved in making some of the food the day before for added fun. Have a picnic; most parks should have spaces for this. This way you can avoid overpriced food and drinks at theme parks and attractions!

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Chilli done my way

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I love spicy food, I grew up in a world where having a spicy curry based dish for breakfast is norm. Most fast food restaurants back home serve chilli sauce as a standard instead of tomato sauce for your burgers and fries. So … Continue reading

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Lunch Ideas at Work

 A staggering £28000 goes to lunch throughout an average working life!! (Source MSN Money). Why waste so much money on bloody pre-packed sandwiches? That’s not all; try adding up all the money that goes to the snacks/soft drinks vending machines at work. 
Here’s a recipe for making an awesome omelette and salad that will fill you up but won’t punch a hole in your pocket. It feeds two so you can take turns making it with a work colleague! Make it the nite before, let it cool and pack it the next day for work. The only expensive ingredient here is the chorizo but there will be a lot leftover to be used in sandwhiches, pasta, salads and soups.

4 eggs
Few slices of chorizo sausage,
1 carrot
½  an onion
Olive oil
Step 1: Heat a large pan to medium heat.  Sauté the onions until they are soft wit a tiny bit of oil (don’t want to use too much oil oz the sausage is fatty enough). Drop in the chorizo, followed by the shredded carrot. Remove after a few minutes.
 Step 2: Beat the eggs, add salt and pepper to taste. Lightly grease a pan with butter or oil, pour in the eggs. When the edges are getting slightly cooked, spread the onion carrots and chorizo on to the egg mix. Finish it of under the grill for a few minutes. Done!
 Add a salad of your choice and your ready go! (some basil, lambs letuce and sweet corn dressed with olive oil works for me)
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Sideways Rain and Soup….

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The online news sites are reporting that we had a week’s worth of rain in a night!! It’s confirmed, there’s no such thing as summer in Scotland – it’s a big government conspiracy! Summer is just a word in the … Continue reading

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Make yer own tomato based pasta sauce.. its not hard!

A tin of tomatoes will cost roughly around 55p but a jar of pasta sauce can be up to 4 times the price! So don’t bother buying all that “special” jars of pasta sauce. All you need is tin of tomato, some crushed garlic, onions, olive oil and some dried herbs.  Saute the garlic and onions, pour in the chopped tomatoes and mix a few pinches of herbs! Done!

You can also experiment with additional ingredients like mushrooms, chillies, peppers, capers, paprika and bacon!

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