Pasta alla arrabiata!

I try not to go a week without at least one big plate of pasta. And often times, it’s the sauce that makes it for me. Here’s my personal definition of a great spicy meat sauce. Onions, garlic, peppers, meat and tomatoes all add up to a fantastic topper for that big bowl of carbohydrates (eat my shorts, atkins, they’re low-carb), and the perfect excuse to crack open that sangiovese you’ve been saving.

–spice mixture–
1 tsp basil
1 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp rosemary
1/4 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp marjoram
1/4 tsp sage

2-3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 tbsp. ground black pepper (or to taste)
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, seeded, chopped
1 serrano chili, seeded, chopped fine
1 habanero chili, seeded, chopped fine
1 lb. extra lean ground beef or turkey
1 tbsp. worcestershire sauce
1 lb. roma tomatoes, seeded, chopped (or one 15oz can chopped tomatoes)
1 can (15oz) tomato sauce
1 small can (6oz) tomato paste
1/2 tsp. hot sauce (or to taste)

Put a large saucepan on medium-high heat, and bring the olive oil up to temperature. Add the onions and black pepper, and saute until they begin to turn translucent around the edges. Add the garlic, and cook for two minutes, stirring frequently. Then add bell pepper and cook for a further two minutes, stirring frequently. Add the serrano & habanero peppers and combine thoroughly. Add ground meat, worcestershire, and 1/3 of spice mixture. Combine and cook until meat is browned, stirring occasionally. Add chopped tomatoes and cook for one minute, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low, add tomato sauce, paste, and remaining spice mixture. Stir well. Add hot sauce and simmer for approx. 10-15 minutes. Serve hot over al dente pasta.