Saturday, July 31, 2010

Spaghetti Bolognese Sauce

Before I begin with my next recipe, if you come here looking for Lexie, she can either be found here or you can just scroll down past this post (but only after you take a minute to read my sauce ;-)  ).  Anyway, Spaghetti sauce.  I believe that everyone and their dog has their own different spaghetti sauce incarnation, and that is the beauty of a spaghetti sauce, because you can put whatever you want into it.  I would love to hear about your favourite way of preparing spaghetti.  Here is my Bolognese sauce that I like to prepare, and here is what you will be needing:

1 1/2 pounds of extra lean ground beef
796ml can of diced tomatoes
156ml can of tomato paste
2 shallots (or half large red onion) diced
3-4 gloves of garlic finely chopped
1/2 red pepper
1/2 green pepper
3-4 carrots, coarsely chopped and steamed
Quart of button mushrooms (optional)
salt & pepper and your favourite herbs & spices.  I like to use
Lots of Oregano
Couple of pinches of sage
Few pinches of Thyme
Couple of pinches of Rosemary
Couple of shakes of crushed red peppers
Tiny pinch of Cayenne pepper
Tiny pinch of chipotle pepper
3 Bay leaves

Peel and cut up the carrots and steam them until they are tender.  Put them in a food processor or blender (I don't have a food processor, hence the blender, but if you have a food processor, use that instead) with a little of the diced tomatoes (to help liquify them) and blend until smooth.

In a heavy bottomed pot, heat on medium with a generous splash of olive oil.  Saute the onions and garlic until the onion start to lose their colour.  Add the meat and cook until it is just brown, then add the tomato paste and the blended carrots from above.  Reduce the heat a little and cook the paste and carrots for about 7 or eight minutes.  Add the diced tomatoes and everything else at this point, including all of the herbs and spices.  Reduce the heat further, to low and cover.  Cook for as long as you can, as it will get better the longer that you can cook it, and stir occasionally.


-For a leaner meal, substitute ground chicken or turkey for the ground beef
-You can add meatballs to the sauce by combining:
       1/2 pound of ground beef
       2/3 cup of bread crumbs
       1 egg
       1/2 tsp garlic powder
       few shakes of crushed chili pepper
       Make into about half inch balls and parboil them in some water for a few minutes, then add to the
       completed sauce and simmer
-Steam different veggies like Broccoli or Cauliflower
-Add a splash of Red wine to the sauce, before you add the tomato paste.  Let it cook for a little minute to cook off some of the acohol.

So I think that is everything.  I does seem like a lot of stuff, but it is just constituents that most people, I think have in their kitchen.  If you don't have all the stuff, not to worry, it will still be great!

Until next time

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