Mondays have become synonymous with Baking and Pasta. I am so dog tired, by the time, I get home from school, I can only whip up something easy peasy.  Pasta seems to be an ideal choice for such days. One pan/pot dinner,which we can both gobble up, while our minds continue to fight with the last few potent blows of Monday Blues.

During the drive back home, from class, I was trying to figure out what it would be,which would be on our plates. The man had been suggesting that we do a Chinese Take-Out, as we were both so tired. Somehow, my guilt did not let me do that. I knew the next day,we would be out for our anniversary Dinner, and wanted to avoid two straight nights of eating out. How people change, I said to myself !  I was actually taking on cooking from scratch, even at the offer from an evening off from the kitchen. So much for being a bit health conscious for the new phase for life. With the offer of Chinese dangling around my mind, I decided on something, which I had seen on television a few months back. An adaptation of Chinese Spaghetti with Meatballs by Rachael Ray  it had to be for the weekday dinner. 

Why suddenly meatballs in a Chinese avatar ?! Well, I knew I had some frozen meatballs stashed away in the freezer, and also the man's idea of Chinese was looming large. So I knew I could cheat my way through and reduce prep work. I adapted Rachael's original recipe, to work around the ingredients I had in my freezer and pantry. I had some chopped frozen veggies, which I could substitute for the fresh mushrooms and bok choy,which Rachael had suggested. I knew I had to cook fast, so anything, which cut short the cooking process, was on my mind. Green Beans and broccoli would be taking the place of the suggested mushrooms. I had to be careful about the pasta being al dente, timing the cooking process at exactly 6 minutes. I was almost mentally set, by the time, I unlocked the front door.


Recipe Adapted from Rachael Ray

Spaghetti: 1/2 lb
Meatballs: Frozen: Around 10-12(you can make you own, I used the ready made variety)
Ginger : Grated: 2 tbsp
Onion: 1 medium sized: Sliced finely.
Canola Oil
Chopped Frozen Veggies: Broccoli,Tomatoes, Green Beans: 2 cups : Feel free to use fresh veggies
Soy Sauce
Sriracha : According to heat preferences
Tomato ketchup: 1 tbsp
Salt: To taste
Paprika: 1/2 to 1 tsp/according to heat preferences
Green Chilies: Chopped: 2-3
Black Pepper:
Chicken Stock: 1 1/2 cup


Cook the frozen meatballs in the oven at 350F till they are cooked through. Discard the grease and drain the meatballs on paper towels.

In a large non stick pan, add in the canola oil. Once its hot enough, add in the sliced onion.

Once the onion slices get translucent, add in the grated ginger and chopped green chilies. Fry them around a bit, so that the ginger gets cooked, but not burnt.

Add in the frozen/fresh veggies, and stir fry them for a few minutes.

Once the veggies have thawed, add in the sauces, salt, black pepper, paprika, and chicken stock and mix well. Cook for around a couple of minutes.

Add in the cooked meatballs and simmer for around 2-3 minutes. Keep stirring frequently.

Cook the pasta according to package instructions. The pasta should be al dente(should have a bite) and not get soggy. Drain in a colander. Reserve some of the pasta water.

Cook the veggies  uncovered till the sauces have thickened and the veggies are cooked but retain a crunch.

Add in the cooked pasta to the pan and mix well, with a pair of tongs. If you feel that the sauces have dried up a bit, then add in some of the reserved pasta water, to mix things better. The pasta water is starchy so it helps in thickening the sauce.

Check for seasonings, and serve hot.

Bon Appetit !!!

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