I’ve discovered grocery store pickup, and life will never, ever, ever be the same again.
This means that I can sit at my computer in the comforts of my own home while wearing my pajamas, put food items in my online grocery store cart while wearing my pajamas, then drive to the grocery store where someone will actually come out and put all my groceries in the trunk of my car…all while I’m wearing my pajamas.
With as much traveling as we do on the weekends, it’s important to me to still find ways for us to have fresh meals during the week that are time and effort efficient. This means that I’ve been ordering groceries online, picking them in under 10 minutes, throwing them in a crockpot while at work, then coming home to savory aromas and warm home cooked meals.
And this is where Gina Homolka, the author of Skinnytaste comes in!
I’ve mentioned her before, but she really is one of the best food bloggers (and now a best selling author of two cookbooks!). I’ve been making her dishes for years, and they’re always amazing recipes that are low in calories and high in flavor. She finds the ways to substitute fattening ingredients with other real ingredients, and you’ll never be able to tell the difference.
I ordered her Skinnytaste Fast and Slow cookbook in October and I have never made so many recipes from one cookbook in so little time! From her pork chops to her asparagus soup to her chicken tikka masala (which I’ll be sharing soon), we’ve loved everything we’ve tried.
Last week we had her Slow Cooked Beef Ragu with Pappardelle: flank steak, sauteed garlic, crushed tomatoes, beef broth, carrots, bay leaves, and thyme were slow cooked together to make a hearty meat sauce.
I added italian seasoning, tomato paste for more zest, and brown sugar because I always love a sweeter sauce. Also, be sure that it cooks for 9-10 hours because so that the flank steak will be melt-in-your-mouth tender – at 6 hours it’s fully cooked, but still a little chewy.
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 6 garlic cloves, smashed slightly
- 1½ lbs. flank steak, cut against the grain into 4 pieces
- salt and pepper
- 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- ¼ cup reduced sodium beef broth
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 tbsp italian seasoning
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 1/2 tbsp brown sugar
- 16 ounces pappardelle pasta
- Parmesan, part-skim ricotta, and parsley for topping
- In a small skillet, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until golden and lightly browned, about 2 minutes.
- Season the beef with 1 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker. Pour the tomatoes and broth over the beef and add the garlic from step one, carrots, bay leaves, thyme, italian seasoning, tomato paste, and brown sugar.
- Cover and cook on high for 6 hours or on low for 9 to 10 hours. Discard the herbs and shred the beef in the pot using 2 forks.
- Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain, top with meatsauce, parmesan, ricotta, and parsley.