Pasta alla Jana

Many years ago I reluctantly gave up pasta forever (well, there are cheat days once a year or so) and I have missed it every single day since that foolish decision was made.

Alas I sometimes brave the pasta cooking process anyways, swallowing my urge to gobble it all up myself, torturing myself for Vincent’s sake (lucky bastard!).

This time I whipped out my handy Spiralizer and made zucchini noodles for myself too, so for a change I could flavour the pasta sauce with actual salt and not my own tears as I usually do while weeping at the sight of its deliciousness.

Who’s hungry? Vincent, myself and our lovely friend Adriaan. But naturally we want seconds, so this recipe can serve 4 or 5 people.


  • 320g ground beef
  • 300g carrots, sliced or diced
  • 200g green beans, halved
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 50g shimeji mushrooms
  • 200g zucchini, spiralized into zoodles
  • 500g penne pasta
  • 390g arrabiata pasta sauce
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 410g Italian style canned tomato, oreganum & basil mix
  • 1 tbsp chilli & garlic seasoning
  • 2 tbsp freeze dried basil
  • salt & pepper

Oodles of zoodles

If you’ve got a kitchen toy that can make zoodles, whip it out and get to it.

Sauce it up

Start getting saucy by heating some olive oil in a deep frying pan or saucepan and then adding the carrots, onion and green beans to it.

Stir it and then spice it up. Add a generous sprinkle of basil, chilli and garlic seasoning, salt and pepper.

Add the mushrooms.

Stir it well and let it sauté until the onions are translucent. Then add the ground beef.

Spice it up again using the basil, chilli & garlic, salt and pepper.

Stir well and allow the beef to cook before adding the arabiatta pasta sauce and canned tomato mix.

Add the arabiatta sauce and tomato mix. Give it a good stir. Let it simmer for about 15 minutes (or just until your pasta is cooked).

Sauce up your throat with a glass of wine. We’re having Woolworths’ Cape Juicy Red.

Cook the pasta

Boil water in a pot on the stove. Add salt and a dash of olive oil. Chuck the penne pasta into the boiling water and cook for 12 minutes.

Heat some olive oil in a pan and add the zoodles. Cook for 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

The sauce should look something like this by now.

Build a bowl

Layer 1 — pasta.

Layer 2 — sauce.

Layer 3 — cheese.

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