11 May A Special Mother’s Day Gift
As a young girl, I spent a lot of time helping my mother and Abuela in the kitchen. “La ayudante especial,” they would call me.” I felt so grown up and couldn’t wait ’til I could take on even more responsibilities in the kitchen. I was always so eager to learn how they cooked their wonderful dishes. I wanted to cook just like them. Eventually, I grew older and my mother shared many of the family secrets.
Today, I have a daughter of my own and we get to create our own memories in the kitchen. Though, in all honesty, with our busy schedules, it isn’t easy to avoid the frozen dinner temptations or disregard the desire to quickly pick up some prepared food on the way home, rather than breaking out the pots and pans to make our meal- not to mention cleaning them afterward.
For Mother’s Day this year, I wanted something more meaningful than sitting down at some overcrowded restaurant and wait a ridiculous amount of hours to finally be seated. So, as a gift to MY mom and myself, I decided to stay in and cook. Yes, cook! I know it sounds crazy, but it actually works out perfectly. What could be a better gift than getting to spend the entire day, uninterrupted, with my little girl while honoring “abuela”? It’s a win-win for all involved.
Now, since both my mother and daughter are huge fans of Italian cuisine, deciding what to cook was a no brainer. And since this meal was to be an extra special one, only the best ingredients would do. We headed on down to our local Walmart to get everything we needed. We got ready to make one of my baby’s favorites: the ever popular and super simple spaghetti with tomato and meat sauce- just like my mom made for me when I was a kid. This was no ordinary spaghetti though. It was special spaghetti “just for Abuela”. It was Mother’s Day, after all.
For this recipe, we used Barilla® pasta (like mom always did) and San Marzano tomatoes (my favorite) and ground sirloin in the sauce. Luckily, I found all the products for this special meal at my local Walmart, so there was no need to drive all over town to find everything. Cause really, who’s got time for that?
On Sunday, we spent he day in the kitchen together, getting messy and making the house smell wonderful. Aside from the delicious meal we made together, the best part was all the laughs mu little munchkin and I shared. Just I used to do with my Mami when I was that age. Once we were done, we presented our masterpiece as a special surprise to Abuela. My baby was so excited to show off all
our her hard work. It was pretty neat to see how all the special moments I’d shared with my mom in the kitchen all those years ago (30 years to be exact) had come full circle, as my daughter got to present her grandma with her special meal.
Barilla® Spaghetti with San Marzano Tomato Meat Sauce
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
1 box Barilla® Spaghetti
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 small carrot, chopped
1 stem celery, chopped
1 pound ground beef
1 28-ounce can San Marzano Tomatoes
1 cup water
Salt and black pepper to taste
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, shaved
PLACE a pot of water to boil. MEANWHILE, in a large skillet, sauté the onion, carrot and celery with the extra virgin olive oil. ADD the meat and cook until browened well. INCORPORATE the tomatoes and 1 cup of water, season with salt and pepper to taste and bring to a simmer.
COOK pasta in the boiling water according to the package directions. DRAIN pasta and toss with sauce. TOP with cheese.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Barilla. The opinions and text are all mine.