Yogurt noodles and red sauce

This recipe is by far my favorite turkish-inspired food. It is fast, easy, and very versatile. I have adapted several different recipes into this one, and added my own twists to the red sauce. This is a hard recipe to mess up, so use this as a guideline to create your own turkish-inspired concoction!

Ingredients:
– Any noodle (I like spaghetti, farfalle, or fusili, but use anything!)
Yogurt sauce:
-Plain yogurt
-garlic
-salt to taste
Red sauce:
-butter (or margarine)
-tomato paste
-cumin
-salt to taste
(optional, but HIGHLY recommended):
-paprika
-red chili powder (and/or flakes)
-mushrooms
-onion
-tomato
-olive oil

Preparation:

Salt some water to boil your noodles in, and cook them in your preferred fashion (soft, al dente, whatever!). In the meantime, pull out one medium clove of garlic (this is a good starting point, add more or less to your preference) and mash it in a mortar. If you are feeling lazy and don’t mind the chunks/ strong flavor, you can dice the garlic instead (thats what I do). Add the garlic to your preferred amount of yogurt (1/2c-1c is plenty for one serving) and salt to taste. The salt brings out the natural flavor of the plain yogurt and helps the garlic mingle. Put this mixture in the refrigerator while you prepare the rest. This lets the flavors mellow.
If you decided to go with some of the optional veggie ingredients, you can start with them now! Add a dolop of olive oil to a sauce pan to cook them. I use 2 slices of onion, diced, and half a small tomato, also diced. Cook the onion until it is translucent, then add the tomato and cook until soft. Now, add butter. A Tbsp will give you a nice, thin sauce (recommended for this recipe), while any less will make it more like spaghetti sauce, Whichever you prefer. Now, cut the mushrooms (if you want them) in your preferred method (I like to leave them in thick slices, but you can dice if you like), however many you want (I usually use 2 button mushrooms). Cook the mushrooms in the buttery concoction. Once they are cooked to your preference, add the spices as you deem fit. I usually use one dash of cumin, 3 dashes of paprika, 1 dash of chili powder, and more salt than I should…then add about 1 tsp of tomato paste. Mix it all together until the tomato paste is thinned throughout. Sometimes the mushrooms absorb some butter, so if you want your sauce thinner you can add more, or add some water.
Take out your yogurt mixture. If you made your spaghetti sauce thick, or if you plan on draining your noodles thoroughly with a colander, you may want to thin your yogurt with some water. I only do when I make farfalle, since the noodles are bigger and the yogurt doesnt smooth out on them as well. If you drain your noodles the lazy way, through a fork or something (like me!) don’t thin your yogurt! The remaining noodle water will! Mix the noodle and the yogurt together. If the yogurt is too thin and watery, add somemore. Pour the red sauce on top and dig in!

Afiyet olsun!

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