Sunday, October 23, 2011

Epcot's Food and Wine Festival: Italy and Spaghetti

Welcome to The Virtual Food & Wine Festival Party hosted by my friend Deb at Focused on the Magic! In honor of the annual Food and Wine Festival at Epcot, several Disney bloggers have joined forces to have our own Virtual F&W Festival! You are all invited to visit each of our blogs and virtually eat your way around the Word Showcase!! Please visit all of our blogs and feel free to leave comments on our dishes.

As I was mentally walking around the World Showcase at Epcot thinking of all the countries, I knew exactly which country I was going to choose and which dish I would make for our Virtual F&W Festival! ITALY! I wrote about why this was my favorite pavilion earlier this year, but if you didn't read or have forgotten, that's my where my family originated~ at least my dad's side! My great grandparents were born and raised in Genoa, Italy. They immigrated to the USA in the early 20th century and settled down in Brooklyn, NY.


Jonathan and I in Genoa, Italy for our honeymoon, June 2007

Rumor has it Grandma Carboni brought this Spaghetti Sauce recipe over "on the boat" with her. I'm not sure there was canned tomato sauce in Genoa in the early 1900's, but none the less, this is her recipe! Maybe she tweaked it once she came to the states and learned about Hunt's tomato sauce and paste.

Grandma Carboni's Spaghetti Sauce
a little less than 1/2 a cup of olive oil
1 medium onion chopped
3 Tablespoons parsley flakes
garlic salt
2 15 oz cans tomato sauce
2 12 oz cans tomato paste
1 teaspoon sweet basil chopped
1 big pinch oregano
1 lb browned ground beef
optional sugar to taste

Cook the onion in the olive oil, parsley flakes, garlic salt and pepper until onion looks transparent. Don't cook too fast or let the onion brown. Add tomato sauce, paste, basil and oregano. Stir until blended. Stir in browned ground beef. Turn stove to low and simmer 3-4 hours, stirring about every 15-20 minutes. Towards the end of the cooking time, if the sauce is too acidic for your taste, add a tablespoon of sugar (or more) until the taste is what you like!

I personally like this sauce better after it has spent the night in the fridge. It's also still really good after it's been frozen, thawed and reheated! What I like best about this sauce is it's thickness. I love how it sticks to the noodles! When we spent 2 weeks in Italy, I never had spaghetti sauce that I like as much as this recipe or that stuck to the noodles like this does... maybe that means Grandma Carboni did tweak it a bit when she came to the USA! ;)


Ingredients and ground beef. The photo on the left is for 1 serving, but I doubled it- so I'll have enough to freeze for later!

Onions, parsley, salt, pepper and olive oil sauteing (L). All the other ingredients added (R).

At the end of the 3rd hour of cooking, I always taste it and decide if I need to add sugar or not. This time, I did. You can see the sugar on the left- I don't measure, just sprinkle until it looks right! On the right is the final product! Yummy!


Toddler Tested. Toddler Approved!

Thanks Grandma Carboni for passing down this recipe to the fourth generation!


  1. Wow, 4 generations!! That is some special sauce, made with love. Thanks so much for sharing it with us. It'll be a new staple in my house and I'll be thinking of you and your Grandma Carboni whenever I make it :)

    Thanks for joining the Virtual Food & Wine Party!!

  2. Yum! Italian food is my favorite. I may have to try Grandma Carboni's sauce!

  3. Mmmmmm! I know what I'm making for dinner! Looks delicioso!

  4. I will have to try this recipe. I have three kids who could eat spaghetti every day of the week if I let them! :-)

  5. That looks so good, Beth. I love the spaghetti face , that's kid approved..

  6. I think I'm in the mood for spaghetti tonight. Yummm!