Pasta with Mediterranean Meat Sauce

I love making this SO satisfying Mediterranean Pasta with Meat Sauce during the week. My kids love it, the hubby loves it, it hits the spot every time.

And of course, made with love. ♡

Cozy Mediterranean Pasta and a Thunderstorm

That’s right, here in Turkey we are having a crazy storm. It’s unlike a storm I’ve experienced before. It’s now December, and the newscast mentioned potential tornadoes. Really, tornadoes in December?…

Global warming?

Also, the wind was so strong that they ended up canceling school for the next day.

Furthermore, If you don’t already know, cats and dogs live freely outside in Turkey. Well, with that being said, as I was walking across the street to go to my local grocery market, there was a cat meowing in a pine tree with needle-like “leaves”. I thought it was caught in it. I ran home, grabbed some of Bello’s cat food (Bello is my cat I rescued from the streets) brought it straight to the cat, and convinced it down.

The homeless cat ate in fear—it was always watching its back. Poor kitty cat. It was starting to rain too hard, I had no choice but to give my last few words then head back home to my girls.

This “warm winter(ish) storm” was crazy.

weeknight mediterranean pasta

The Mediterranean Meat Sauce

Let’s talk about this Mediterranean Meat Sauce. Ok, let’s be clear here. The word Mediterranean can have so many different angles. It can be Greek-inspired, Albanian-Inspired, etc. And well, because I live in Turkey… surprise, surprise, it’s made with a Turkish-Mediterranean twist!

The meat sauce has all of the most common and loved spices in it like oregano, mint, paprika, and cumin. All earthy, aromatic spices.

Also, there is one other very special ingredient—leeks! Eeek!

Ok, let’s get on with the recipe. Catch up again soon.

bowl of pasta

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Pasta with Mediterranean Meat Sauce

Difficulty: Beginner Prep Time 10 min Cook Time 30 min Total Time 40 mins Best Season: Suitable throughout the year

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Heat a pan over medium-high heat. Once heated, drizzle in the olive oil, add the onion, leek, garlic, green pepper, salt, and pepper (to taste). Sautee until the onions have softened and have browned around the edges, this should take about 7 minutes. 

  2. Next, add the ground meat and spices. Season with more salt and pepper. Cook until golden brown, about 15-20 minutes on high heat. 

  3. When ready, add the tomato and red pepper paste. Stir-fry the mixture for  30 seconds. Then, add the broth. Cook on low heat, stirring occasionally until nice and thick—about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook your favorite pasta according to the manufacturer's instructions. 

  4. Now let's put it all together. Add 1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese to the meat sauce. Stir to combine. Taste the meat sauce to adjust any seasonings ( adding salt and pepper if necessary). Add as much pasta to your favorite dish, pour the meat sauce over the pasta and garnish with more cheese and freshly chopped parsley. 

    Enjoy!

Note

If the sauce becomes too thick, I like to add a little bit of the pasta water until I find the thickness of the sauce just right. 

If you cannot reach Turkish green peppers, you can use regular bell peppers. 

Keywords: pasta

Ashley Altan

Ashley Altan is a Food Writer, Recipe Developer & Photographer for Crave-Worthy. When she's not whipping up recipes in her kitchen, she's exploring the rich, historical culture of Turkey and its cuisine.

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