25 March 2013

* Bolognese Sauce

Bolognese Sauce
I have several Bolognese Sauce recipes, it all depends on the ingredients I have available at the time. Today I had everything I needed for this one.

When were kids, my mum's bolognese had mushrooms, onions, tomatoes and bay leaf in it. But no bacon or other vegetables. It was her standby meal for when she had a houseful of teenagers to feed... she always had a houseful of teenagers to feed. She'd finish work at 5pm and phone me to find out how many we needed to cook for, anything more than four and it was bolognese.

When I was nineteen, I started to take over a lot of the cooking for the family, because I had... ummmm... unwittingly.... added another family member. Nope. Didn't marry anyone (that would have been too easy). I had a baby. So... I did my bit to help out.

It was also around about that time, when my brother brought his first serious girlfriend home. So our somewhat chaotic household that had already got a gazillion teenagers camping out in the living room on a daily basis... suddenly added two more.

We ate A LOT of minced beef during our teen years. I think  that mum and dad considered building an extension to get away from us all, at one point. It didn't happen though, because although it must have been hard work, they were the reason that all of our friends felt so welcome, all of the time.

That and my mum's bolognese, obviously.

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Serves 4 - 6

Prep time - 10 minutes
Cooking time - 1hr 30 minutes

You will need
A large non stick skillet/pan with lid

1 tsp olive oil
4.5oz/125g smoked streaky bacon - chopped
1 tsp dried rosemary
2 onions - finely diced
2 carrots - peeled and finely diced
2 sticks celery - finely diced
1 lb/500g lean beef steak mince
2 tsp dried oregano
2 x 14oz/400g cans chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp cherry tomato puree with basil OR bog standard tomato puree
2 heaped tbsp grated Parmesan

Place the pan over a medium heat and add the olive oil, bacon and rosemary. Cook until beginning to turn crisp and golden then add the onion, carrot and celery. Gently cook the vegetables until beginning to soften - about 10 minutes, remembering to stir occasionally.

Add the minced beef and oregano and cook until the meat has started to brown, then add the two cans of tomatoes, swishing each can out with a splash of water and adding it to the pan. Stir in the tomato puree, pop the lid on and cook at a simmer for about 1hr 15 minutes.

Remove from the heat and stir in the freshly grated Parmesan. Serve with your favourite pasta (and more Parmesan if you like).


If serving 6 - 6 propoints per serving of bolognese sauce.
If serving 4 - 9 propoints per serving of bolognese sauce.

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