Bolognese Like Mamma Used To Make
I haven’t done a food post for a while and as Jean had requested I cook one of her favourites I thought I would share with you my spaghetti bolognese recipe. I know people have so many variations to this. This is my version and with the exception of a couple of items is the same as I had too as a child. This dish always goes down well in this house. I do make quite a large one so there is enough for the next day to turn into a pasta bake.
Spaghetti Bolognese Recipe
500g minced beef 12% fat
1 x carrot chopped into large chunks
1 x stick of celery chopped into large chunks
1 x Large onion peeled and cut into large chunks
1 x tin of chopped tomatoes
1 x Beef stock cube
1 x large clove of garlic (or 1 tsp lazy garlic)
1 x Heaped tsp of dried Oregano
1 x Bay Leaf
1 x flat tsp ready chopped chilli (according to taste)
1 x heaped tsp of fennel seeds
1 x Lge Tbsp of Tomato puree
1 x Lge Tbsp of Balsamic Vinegar
Salt & Pepper
Freshly grated Parmesan to serve
1/2 pt water
Pasta of your choice (I like to use shells as they hold the meat inside great. Fusilli is also a good one alongside spaghetti.
Pour a little bit of olive oil into a large pan and start to heat.
Place the carrot, onion, celery, fennel seeds into the food processor and give it a good whizz until it is chopped finely enough and empty into the pan.
Chop the pepper and add with the garlic and chilli and soften with the chopped vegetables.
When the vegetables are soft enough add the minced meat, breaking it up and leave to cook a while before stirring it.
When the meat has browned add the stock cube, balsamic vinegar, tomato puree, water, salt and pepper, bay leaf and the chopped tinned tomatoes and give it all a good stir.
Add the chopped mushrooms, cover and leave to simmer for an hour.
Meanwhile, cook your pasta according to instructions. I tend to use 30z dried weight per person.
Before serving remove the bay leaf and season to taste.
When you get to the end of your parmesan and left with just the thick rind I actually keep these and put in the bolognese while it’s cooking to add extra flavour.
The following day I tend to dice a large courgette and add it to the mixture giving it a good stir. To this add cooked pasta and give it another stir. Empty it all into an appropriate sized cooking pan and cover with cheese (to taste – we like a lot) and pop in the oven for 30 minutes. Serve with fresh crusty bread to mop up the juices or a gorgeous green salad.
When my kids were small and fussy with regards to vegetables I used to put the carrot, celery, onion, red pepper, courgette into the food processor and whizz until it was smooth. As they get older get it a bit coarser until it is finely chopped etc. I would chop the mushrooms very small at the beginning and again get bigger as they got used to it.
As there are only the two of us tonight there will be plenty left over for tomorrow to make a nice pasta bake. You can do this with so many additions. It’s very versatile and so much nicer than a jar of sauce from the supermarket. The addition of extra veg bulks it up wonderfully and stretches to another day.