Food has the power to evoke certain feelings and memories in people .For me a well made Bolognese ragu served with fresh tagliatelle has the ability to relax, sooth and restore after a long day at work……it is the king of all comfort foods in my opinion. The great thing about this recipe is that it can be made in advanced and stored in batches too, so at the end of the day, dinner becomes simple and satisfying.
I have tried out many recipes for Bolognese and have discovered that keeping it simple is the key, the flavours of the ingredients used should give the sauce intensity rather than adding too many herbs and spices.
1 Tbsp Butter
50g Pancetta, diced
1 Medium Onion, finely chopped
3 Cloves Garlic, minced
2 Medium Carrots, finely diced
2 Celery stalks, finely diced
500g Beef and Pork Mince
180ml Red Wine
1 Tbsp Tomato Puree
250 ml Passata
Pinch of Sugar
Salt and Pepper to taste
Melt the butter in a heavy based large saucepan, add the pancetta (smoked bacon could also be substituted) and fry.
Add the onions and garlic and cook them until they are softened, at this point stir in the carrots and celery and cook for a further few minutes stirring from time to time, this forms the sofritto for the base of the sauce. The beef and pork mince can be added at this point, stirring constantly until the meat is lightly browned but not drying out. Pour the red wine into the pan and let it reduce for a few minutes. Add the tomato puree and cook for a further couple of minutes, then mix in the passata. At this point add the sugar as it helps to take the tartness from the tomato. Add salt and Pepper to your taste and leave the sauce to cook at a simmer for about 1 hour. The longer the sauce is cooked for the richer it will be.
The Bolognese is now ready, serve it with your favourite pasta and some grated parmesan. I like tagliatelle, fettuccine and penne especially as it holds the sauce rather than spaghetti which will leave the ragu on the plate as you eat.
That’s all there is to it and you’ll end up with a Bolognese ragu to make any Italian Mama proud…..Enjoy!!!