Happy Sunday! Today I thought I’d share one of my family’s Sunday dinner favorites with you. Even though it’s grilling season, the weather doesn’t always cooperate. This bolognese sauce served with pasta or over rice is one my whole family likes and is great on a rainy day.
I started experimenting with making homemade bolognese sauce a few years ago. I wanted a variation to the typical spaghetti dinner. I scoured recipes on the Internet, taking a little from the ones that sounded good, and came up with my own interpretation. While, basically they are all similar, there is definitely room to make it personal. It can be served with pasta or even rice! Being gluten sensitive, I have mine with the rice.
I’ll tell you upfront, this isn’t a quick meal, but once you get it all put together in the pot the rest of the time it’s just simmering with an occasional stir and maybe adding a little more stock as it simmers down. There’s plenty of time to get other things done between stirring and adding stock. I’ll often make this recipe on a Sunday afternoon. Starting around 3p. Then we’re ready to eat around 6p.
This meal is in the top 5 of my kid’s favorites around my house. And, if your kids are anything like my 7 and 10 year olds you know they can be hard to please 🙂 So, here’s a great bolognese sauce that even the kids should like!
- 5 stalks of celery
- 4 carrots
- 1 white onion
- 10 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1.5 lbs of ground beef
- 6 fresh basil leaves (removed from stems)
- fresh oregano (removed from stems) or dried if you do not have fresh
- fresh thyme sprigs (attached to stems)
- 3 dried bay leaves
- 1/4 red wine
- 6 oz can of tomato paste
- 24 oz of chopped tomatoes
- 32oz carton of chicken stock
- olive oil
- 1/2 tablespoon of worcestershire sauce
- sea salt and pepper to taste
- fresh parmesan cheese for serving
- rice or pasta
- with heat on medium to medium low add olive oil to large saute pan (with high sides) to coat bottom, warm
- peel and quarter onion and add to food processor to chop **if you don’t have a large food processor you’ll just have to chop by hand**
- add garlic cloves to food processor with onion and chop a little more (not too mushy, you want little chunks)
- put onion and garlic mixture and sea salt (to taste) into heated pan of olive oil and saute until soft (about 6 minutes) stirring occasionally so it doesn’t stick
- cut celery & carrots into chunks, then add to food processor and pulse until in smaller pieces (again not too much, you don’t want mush)
- add chopped celery & carrots to the pan with the sauteed onion & garlic, sea salt to taste, simmer until softened, about 10 minutes
- add the 1.5 lbs of ground beef to the pan with everything else and cook, approximately 10 minutes, breaking up pieces until no longer pink, stir frequently
- mix in tomato paste
- stir in chopped tomatoes and add a little more sea salt (i know this sounds like a lot of salt, but in the end it is not)
- turn heat down to low
- add 2 cups of chicken stock, stirring
- add dried bay leaves, fresh thyme sprigs, basil leaves, and oregano leaves
- add 1/4 cup of red wine
- Pour a glass for yourself!!
- add 1/2 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
- stir everything well
- simmer uncovered on low for 1.5 to 2 hours (or longer if you have time), stirring occasionally & adding chicken stock from time to time as liquid evaporates, you should have bubbling, but not popping out of the pan!
- prepare your pasta of choice or white rice
- serve in bowls and garnish with freshly grated parmesan cheese
I hope your family enjoys it as much as mine does!