I think one of the best ways to spice up a packaged meal is by adding something homemade to it, whether it be a sauce or a side dish. I made a fresh pasta sauce and sautéed vegetables to go with the pasta and the entire meal ended up being quite delicious.
I have been meaning to try this recipe from Smitten Kitchen for a long time now. Now, this recipe is by no means healthy. I'm a bit embarrassed to even post it on here, to be honest. But I had to! After all Deb went on and on about how many top chefs have fawned over this recipe, despite the fact that it only has 3 ingredients. I couldn't imagine a pasta sauce without garlic and red pepper flakes being particularly enticing, but I went ahead and tried it anyway. Obviously the key to total tomato sauce bliss here is the butter. The 5 tablespoons of butter to be exact. What can I say, sometimes you need some butter, and since I'm almost done with my application to grad school, I thought I deserved it.
This recipe wasn't healthy, but it's natural, at least, which is something I'd like to discuss on here another time. I like to make healthy meals most of the time, but I think the bigger issue facing our society today, when it comes to food, is the fact that most dishes are unnatural. Our bodies don't recognize stuff like high fructose corn syrup, and thus they happen to be much worse for us than something like butter.
Anyway, that's a discussion for another time. The sauce was amazing with the fresh pasta and I added a side of broccoli, mushrooms and leftover kale sautéed in garlic and olive oil. Something about the tomatoes simmering in the onions for close to an hour really allows the flavors to develop.
With a sprinkling of Pecorino Romano, it was a pretty decadent meal.