OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – This simple dish is quick, healthy and a fantastic meatless entree or even a side dish. Adjust the garlic and red pepper if serving to children – but by using whole grain macaroni, the kids will devour it without fuss! Enjoy!
3 T olive oil
1 small onion, roughly chopped
3-4 cloves minced garlic
2 t crushed red pepper
3 T tomato paste
1 (28oz) can petite diced or crushed tomatoes
1 t dried basil
1 t dried oregano
Healthy pinch sugar (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
16oz whole grain macaroni, cooked al dente, drained
1/3 C grated Parmesan plus more for topping
Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Add salt to taste – but be generous. Add pasta; boil for 6-7 minutes, uncovered.
While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in a heavy pot (large enough to hold sauce and cooked pasta) over medium-medium high heat. Add onion, stirring until softened. Should take 6-7 minutes.
Check pasta – should be finished. Drain and set aside.
Add garlic and crushed red pepper to onion. Stir to “bleed” their flavors into the onion/olive oil mixture. Cook for a minute or so. Add tomato paste and stir. It will darken a bit – cook for 90 seconds.
Add tomatoes, oregano, basil and sugar. Stir – scrape bottom of pot while stirring. Bring to simmer.
Add cooked pasta to pot; toss thoroughly. Add 1/3 C grated Parmesan. Toss. Add salt and pepper as desired.
Transfer to serving bowl/plates and top with additional grated Parmesan.