Marina Eats: Restaurant from Another World, Spaghetti with Pine Nuts and Meat Sauce

“The beef and pork are so tender and flavorful…frying and stewing them together makes the different flavors of both meats mingle together to create a taste that neither could produce alone. And the stewed vegetables of another world used as the sauce’s base–they were simmered and crushed into a liquid with a sweet sourness and lots of flavor” (“Spaghetti with Meat Sauce”).

JUMP TO RECIPE

This season’s culinary delight is Isekai Shokudo, otherwise known as Restaurant to Another World. In the first part of episode three, Western Restaurant Nekoya’s “Master” serves up spaghetti with meat sauce for Thomas Alfade, a former proprietor of Alfade Company, and his grandson, Sirius. Thomas’ love for Nekoya’s spaghetti spurred him to popularize wheat noodles and tomato sauce in his own world so that he could eat the dish whenever he liked. Sirius is surprised to hear this truth, as well as learn of the trade of ingredients between Nekoya and his own world that allows both sides to collaborate and grow.

I, too, have a soft spot for spaghetti, and can recall a handful of different variations served to me growing up. My mother never seemed to follow a recipe, choosing her ingredients on whim and randomly hitting us with spice. Some of my favorite variations include sweet Italian sausage, hot dogs filipino-style, and roasted garlic sauce. She made it so much that I actually got sick of spaghetti. I never ordered it at restaurants. I never cooked it once I moved out on my own. It wasn’t until I met my husband, who loves traditional red sauce spaghetti, that I started making it on my own again.

For this recipe, I chose to follow as best I could the ingredients described by Sirius. Feel free to follow it to the letter, or throw in some twists of your own. I find spaghetti sauce to be very forgiving to experimentation. It also freezes well for later consumption.

Spaghetti with Pine Nuts and Meat Sauce

Ingredients

  • ½ pound ground beef
  • ½ pound ground pork
  • 1 package spaghetti noodles
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, drained
    Optional: I buy my tomatoes in bulk at Costco, but suggest you try using San Marzano tomatoes.
  • 1 medium onion
  • 8 ounces Cremini mushrooms
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • ½ cup pine nuts
  • 1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 5 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Olive oil
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • Favorite hot sauce, to taste
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste

Tools

  • Chef’s knife
  • Cutting board
  • Medium pot
  • Large, high-sided non-stick pan
  • Food processor, or blender
  • Measuring cup

Directions

Prepare Ingredients

  1. Bring a medium pot of salted water to boil.
  2. Thinly slice onions.
  3. Thinly slice Cremini mushrooms.
  4. Peel and mince garlic cloves.
  5. Butter tip: if not room temperature/softened, chopping up butter when frozen helps disperse better in a hot pan
  6. Grate Parmesan if not pre-grated.
  7. Optional: toast pine nuts in a pan over medium-low heat until slightly golden, about 3 minutes.

Cook Spaghetti Noodles

  1. Cook spaghetti noodles as instructed on box in medium pot once boiling.
  2. Preserving a cup of pasta water, thoroughly drain noodles.

Make Meat Sauce

  1. While the noodles are cooking, heat a large pan on medium high heat with 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
  2. Break up pork and beef with your hands into pan and season with salt and pepper. Cook until done, about 5-6 minutes. Salt and pepper again, to taste.
  3. Set cooked meat aside and drain pan, leaving any fond.
  4. Melt butter in pan.
  5. Saute onions and crushed garlic in the same pan with butter and fond, seasoning with salt and pepper, until soft and translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
  6. Add sliced mushrooms and cook until softened, 1-2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Turn pan off.
  7. Transfer cooked vegetables to food processor and gradually pulse into a sauce.
  8. Slowly pour tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and 1 teaspoon of salt into processor with onions until completely blended.
  9. Blend in half the pine nuts until smooth.
  10. Return cooked meat and tomato sauce to pan, and mix in the Italian seasoning.
  11. Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until flavors combine.

Plate and Serve

  1. Add noodles to sauce pan and thoroughly mix, or
  2. Divide plain noodles between plates and desired amount of meat sauce on top.
    Garnish with remaining pine nuts.
  3. Top with Parmesan and/or hot sauce, to taste.




“Spaghetti with Meat Sauce.” Restaurant to Another World. Crunchyroll. 17 Jul 2017.

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14 thoughts on “Marina Eats: Restaurant from Another World, Spaghetti with Pine Nuts and Meat Sauce

  1. Heheheheh … I was wondering if you were going to do a post about this series, figuring it might be your sort of thing, but I did not expect a “recipe post”! Interesting.

    And it sounds tasty – gotta admit.

    Interesting that you chose pine nuts to use in the tomato based sauce too … would not have thought of that. I like to use nuts either as part of a green salad or when they are ground into a paste and mixed with other ingredients, producing a dip/”salad” side dish, like Georgian Mkhali (which is delicious).

    Anyhoo … thanks for the write up … hopefully there will be more! ^^

    Isekai Shokodou is a series that really hits the sweet spot for me – it has quickly wormed it’s way into my heart, so it’s cheering to see it getting some attention.

    Liked by 1 person

    • People have been surprisingly receptive of the show. I don’t usually see as much praise for a series of this nature, slow and quiet, but I guess there are more viewers lately needing a bit of calm.

      I used to actually do recipe posts more often, particularly when I first started blogging. You can still see some of them here, like recipes on omelette rice, green tea creme brulee, and curry bread. I’ve felt guilty about not doing one for so long! Hopefully this show will inspire me to do more in the kitchen.

      I don’t usually use nuts in my sauce, but since the show describes it, I figured I had to use some. There are plenty of sauces that use walnuts, but I’ve always been partial to pine nuts because of my love for traditional pesto sauce.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. We have some difficult food requirements that make us change marinara sauce a lot. No onions, no garlic (my wife has FODMAP sensitivities). But we’ve found some recipes that work pretty well (using Garlic Oil and chives). I probably wouldn’t ever put pine nuts in, just seems too weird for me.

    One thing that we’ve recently started doing is using our Instant Pot for making marinara sauce. It’s an electric pressure cooker, and because it can get hotter than just boiling, you get some more flavor from browning without drying it out. It’s also a lot easier than having marinara sauce bubble all over the stovetop. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Take away onions and garlic from me and I wouldn’t even know where to start! I do criminally under use chives and scallions, so I guess those would have to step up in my routine.
      I’ve heard a lot about instant pots lately, particularly compared to slow cookers. We do have a slow cooker, but I’ve never felt the need for an instant pot before. I’m pretty careful about covering and saving my kitchen from marinara sauce spills or bubbling, and also regularly check the temperature on my meat to make sure it doesn’t overcook and dry out. Hopefully I can test out an instant pot some time with someone else’s before making the purchase myself!

      Like

      • A slow cooker really can’t compare to the Instant Pot (or another reputable electric pressure cooker). Everything we tried cooking in the slow cooker ended up dry and/or watery. Just never what we wanted. On the other hand, Pot Roast (with carrots, potatoes, and parsnips) in under an hour in the Instant Pot is really great.

        It was a shock to us to cut out FODMAP sources as well, since it felt like every single recipe we had was now completely worthless. But you learn about substitutions, and realize that a lot of things don’t taste bad without onions. It’s also a thing where after you cut everything out and feel better (cause the main reason you’re eliminating FODMAPs is because you aren’t feeling good), you can start narrowing down which ones affect you the most. So my wife can actually have some onions and garlic and lactose and other things. But fructose is completely no good for her, so no honey at all, no HFCS at all.

        Liked by 1 person

        • The slow cooker was a godsend when my husband and I were both working and we could just schedule it to start cooking while we were out. It’d be finished right as we got home. But it didn’t take long for us to realize that almost every recipe had the same texture. Now that I stay at home, it’s really nice to step away from the slow cooker and use different methods. I will definitely try out an instant cooker when I get a chance.
          Honey was actually our wedding souvenir for people to take home. I use honey almost every day, and often substitute it for sugar. It’s great that you both have been able to find workarounds, and that so much more is available now than not that long ago.

          Like

    • It tasted pretty good! The key is to always season at each step. I think people who frequently complain about bland food just forget to taste and season as they go along. I do think in the future I wouldn’t necessary puree the onion, or at least the entire onion. I do like a bit of chunk in my spaghetti sauce 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  3. When you had mentioned to use San Marzano tomatoes, It reminded me of a show Heston Blumenthal ‘In search of Perfection’ where Heston was looking for his version of spaghetti and meatball sauce or as some Brits Spag Bowl. One of the ingredients is San Marzano tomatoes. I won’t go into details about the show, but if you can find it, either watch it online or download it and watch it Heston will explain as to why he uses San Marzano tomatoes,

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much for dropping by and commenting! This was actually the first time I’ve ever watched Heston’s show. I had heard of him, but had never gotten around to actually listening to him. I watched both the episodes first thing this morning. They’re fantastic! I many have found my next food show after I get through the Chef’s Table series.

      San Marzanos featured in the pizza episode only, and I thought it really interesting how he wanted to go even further to really emphasize the essence of the tomato. The spaghetti episode was still fascinating. I’ve always been one to prefer pastas where the sauce clings to the noodle instead of pooling on the plate, and he explains why perfectly.

      Like

      • The thing is that I have, I believe, all of the TV episodes that Heston Blumenthal had done, which includes season 1 and 2 of In Search of Perfection, Heston’s Fantastical Food, and season 1 and 2 of Heston’s Feast. I got these show off a torrent site or most of these shows.

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  4. Another thing is that I like this anime so much, as it has serious and humorous part, in some cases at the same time. Also how he handles the customers, when things get too riled up in the restaurant, plus how the patrons react when they eat their first meal at Nekoya, it is like the patron haven’t been fed a decent meal in a long time, although in the case of Aletta, she didn’t have anything for some time, when she entered Nekoya.

    Like

    • I also love Nekoya’s atmosphere and how the owner so calmly treats every situation. He also has that wonderful ability to remember people’s faces even if they’ve only visited once or twice before. Coupled with some of the customers’ more entertaining reactions, this show really is a fun mixture of emotions.

      Like

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