Homemade spaghetti sauce plus turkey meatballs sits at the top of my favorite comfort-foods list. I was recently told my blood pressure was too high, and for a girl that is in her late 20’s is clearly too young to hear such a thing. Orders from the doc: de-stress often, lower your sodium (anything over 150 mg is too high to consume) and continue to exercise regularly. Unless you have heard the same from your doctor, I bet you haven’t looked too closely at sodium content on the labels of the items you eat. Well, next time you think of it, take a peak…it is crazy! Did you know a whole wheat English muffin contains 450 mg of sodium per serving? Also, pretty much every single precooked frozen meal is completely out of the question. Not to mention it is incredibly hard to find tomato sauce (jarred) that fits my dietary restriction, so Brian mastered the perfect sauce. It is simple, fresh, tasty and check it: very little salt! Ditto on the turkey meatballs…yum, yum, yum.
What you’ll need:
1 large onion, diced
3 – 5 cloves of garlic, minced
2 large cans of Trader Joe’s whole and peeled plum tomatoes (unsalted)
2 Tbsp. Fresh basil, chopped
1 – 2 Tbsp. Fresh Oregano (can substitute dried)
Fresh ground pepper
1. Heat a large saucepan on medium heat, and then add 3 tablespoons olive oil.
2. Dice the onion and sauté until tender.
3. Add 3 cloves of the garlic and sauté until you can smell the garlic. Be careful not to let the garlic burn or get brown.
4. In the meantime blend the two cans of plum tomatoes in a blender. I like to do one can really smooth and the other somewhat chucky so there are chunks of tomatoes in the sauce.
5. Add the pureed tomatoes to the pan.
6. Add the basil and oregano to the pan.
7. Let simmer for 15 minutes and add salt, fresh ground pepper to taste.
8. Optional: At this point I always add another two cloves of garlic and let it simmer for another ten minutes.
That’s it. Easy, fresh and very little salt and no sugar.
What you’ll need:
1lb. ground turkey
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 shallots, diced
1 cup breadcrumbs
Fresh Italian parsley
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1. Combine all ingredients into a bowl and mix with hands. Try not to over-mix or the meatballs will become dense. Using your fingers will help aerate the meatballs and keep them juicy.
2. Form the mixture into equal sized balls—about 2 inches in diameter.
3. Heat a pan on medium-high and add the olive oil.
4. Brown the meatballs so that they have a nice crunch on each side (about 1-2 mins per side).
5. Add the meatballs to the sauce and cook for 30 minutes.
**since I have been following everything the doctor told me to, my blood pressure has lowered to a healthy level. Diet, yoga, acupuncture and continued exercise did the trick…no medication needed!**