Ty’s Worms and Mince


From a very young age, Ty absolutely loved eating worms and his favorite type of worms were those slathered with mince and tomato sauce.  His second love was Portuguese Chicken Spice, a spicy blend of chilies, lemon, garlic, and paprika, which his dad taught him to put on everything.  So, when Ty became a teenager and started cooking dinner for his family, he inevitably made his famous Worms and Mince with Portuguese Chicken Spice every time.

Over the years, Ty became a Worms and Mince Masterchef and when he moved down to Cape Town, he effectively sustained himself by eating this ultimate comfort food for days on end.  On Sunday evenings he would pull out the largest pot in his kitchen, prepare 1200g of Worms and Mince, eat some for dinner, and store the rest in in as many tupperware containers as he could find. For the remainder of the week he would dig into his reserve and prepare solo Worms and Mince or carb-on-carb Worm Sandwiches for lunch and dinner.

When I met Ty he wooed me with his Worms and Mince, which no doubt worked because the only way to my heart is through my stomach.  He shared his Worms-cooking secrets with me but no matter how many times I cook it, I am never able to re-create the perfect blend of mince, tomatoes, and spices that Ty accomplishes with ease every single time.

As a food-venturist, I am always experimenting and changing up recipes with new ingredients, but If I ever attempt to deviate from Ty’s original recipe, he protests vehemently because “A Classic’s a Classic”.  However, over the years I have worn him down and sometimes he allows me to incorporate mushrooms, green peppers, or cabbage.

Ty’s Worms and Mince

A Ty Classic

Ingredients

  • 3 chopped garlic cloves or 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 500g minced beef
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 2 heaped tsp portuguese chicken spice
  • 1 can of tomatoes and onion mix
  • 300g pasta of your choice
Instructions
In a large pan, saute the garlic and onions in oil until lightly browned.  Add the mince and at this time you can also add any veggies you would like (although Ty would be disappointed by this). Next mix in the basil, portuguese chicken spice, salt, and pepper.  Once the meat is nearly finished cooking, add the tomato sauce and bring to a simmer.  At this point cook your pasta of choice, which is spaghetti for Ty because they resemble worms of course and penne for me because I enjoy spiking it with my fork and am convinced that the flavors are better retained due to its ridginess.  Once the pasta is ready, you can either do the Ty method which is to mix the pasta into your sauce or the Kim method which is to spoon large amounts of sauce directly over your pasta. And sometimes we even grate lots of cheese on top.  No matter which pasta you use or how you serve it up, nothin’ is better than coming home, falling on the couch, and not lifting a finger as your man cooks you Worms and Mince after a long day at work…
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