Homemade tomato sauce, vegan meatballs, and rice spaghetti

It’s a special night for (at least) three reasons:
1. It snowed!
2. Santa’s Secret beer is now available, and I bought some in a growler!
3. And it’s my birthday weekend!

We haven’t made this in awhile, so of course we had to tweak the recipe.  Instead of the flour, we used about 1/3 cup flax meal, which really helped the “meatballs” to brown. For the sauce, we just whipped together a quick mirepoix and lots of garlic, then deglazed the pan with some red wine vinegar. Then we added some whole peeled tomatoes (hand crushed), 1 can of tomato sauce, water, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Then the sauce simmered for awhile on medium, after the meatballs were fried, we added them to the pot. Cooked up a side of kale and a pot of rice spaghetti. Dinner is DONE.

Pumpkin pasta with kale and pintos

With the best of intentions, I started to make Chef Chloe’s awesome sounding Creamy Pumpkin Penne. Something about the nutmeg and sweetness just didn’t appeal to me today, so I made the most delicious gluten free mac and cheese, using pumpkin as the sauce base. Behold!

(sorry, phone photo)

1 box Brown Rice elbow pasta
2-3 cups cooked kale (I used about half a bag of frozen)
olive oil
1 onion diced
4 garlic cloves minced
1 tomato chopped
2 TBL low sugar ketchup
1 TBL sage
1 tsp coriander
1 14 oz can of pumpkin (minus 1/4 cup because I used it for the delicious Microwave Muffin)
1 cup of water
1 veggie bullion cube
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 14 oz can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
salt and pepper

Cook the macaroni until al dente. Drain all water, then add the kale (no need to defrost) and a little olive oil to the noodles. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

Saute onion, garlic, and tomato until the vegetables are soft (5-7 minutes). Add ketchup and seasonings. Add pumpkin, bullion cube, and water. Bring to a boil and cook 5 minutes. Add nutritional yeast and mix well. Add noodle mixture and taste for seasoning. Cook until mixture is warmed through and serve.