“Spaghetti with Tomato & Basil” from “The Family Meal”

Maureen: We have another epic disaster on our hands, boys.

Andrew (12): What do you mean?

Maureen: Well, I know this tomato sauce looks OK now, but that’s only because I had to completely disregard the recipe in the end to make it edible.

Nicholas (8): Oh no. Did it not have enough flour again?

Maureen: This time, it was a case of too much of something, in this case olive oil, rather than too little, like the flour in the chocolate cookies. I wanted to make about a jar’s worth of sauce, so I doubled the amounts for the 230 grams of sauce. Unfortunately, using my higher-level maths skills of doubling amounts, that meant he wanted me to use 240 millilitres of olive oil.

Andrew: Is that a lot?

Maureen: It’s a stupid amount of olive oil. I should have just stopped there when I read it, but instead I thought, “No! He’s the el Bulli guy! He must know what he’s doing.”

Nicholas: Is that why it’s so watery?

Maureen: That’s not water, my friend, that’s just olive oil. I tried to take out as much as a could, but obviously I didn’t get it all. Like I said, it was an Epic Disaster.

Andrew: It doesn’t taste THAT bad.

Maureen: Well, of course not. That’s because I ended up adding about 500 grams of parmesan to try to absorb all of the olive oil. The recipe doesn’t tell you to do that. Would you like me to make it again?

Nicholas: Not if it was an epic disaster. No.

Maureen: Agreed. This one absolutely did not work. Another failure from “The Family Meal.”

Pictured: All of the olive oil I skimmed out of the sauce after I finished cooking it. What a waste. I shouldn’t have added so much to begin with. I should have known better.


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“Spaghetti with Tomato & Basil” from “The Family Meal”

5 thoughts on ““Spaghetti with Tomato & Basil” from “The Family Meal”

  1. Maureen Stapleton says:

    Like I said, I should have just gone with my instincts and not used so much. My quest for the perfect easy tomato sauce continues…

  2. Mick says:

    Yes I already thought it was a lot and I used half the amount stated and it was still too much. With the Bolognese sauce I didnt even use any oil, turned out fine, thats a good recipe. I can recommend the bbq sauce absolutely brilliant!

  3. Maureen Stapleton says:

    With the sunny weather and the long Jubilee Weekend coming up in England, maybe I’ll give the BBQ sauce a try this weekend. Thanks for the suggestion.

    I think, in retrospect, the most olive oil you’ll ever need for a tomato sauce would be a few tablespoons. Live and learn, I suppose.

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