Friday, May 15, 2015

Recipe #77: My Bolognese Nancy Wittendorfer

There are many, many Bolognese sauce recipes out there, but no matter which one you look at, they all pretty much have a list of 15-20 ingredients.  I like making it every once in awhile, and because of all of those ingredients, you get a sauce that is complex and has depth.  I could just eat this out of the pot, without the addition of pasta.  So, if you feel like you want to line up a number of things up on your counter, let's get started. 

1/4 lb bacon or 5 oz pkg pancetta                                      1 medium onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped                                                      1 large carrot, chopped
2 tsp garlic                                                                         4 tbsp butter
3 tbsp olive oil                                                                   1 lb 90/10 ground beef
1/2 lb ground pork (not seasoned)                                     1 can beef broth
1 cup dry white wine                                                         1 28 oz can Italian style crushed tomatoes
1 tsp salt                                                                            1/2 tsp oregano
1 tbsp basil                                                                        1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg                                                      1 cup milk, 2% or better
1 lb pasta

In a food processor, add carrot and pulse a few times.  Add in celery, onion and garlic and pulse into a fine dice.   Chop bacon or if using pancetta, cut into 1" pieces with a kitchen shears (it's hard to slice with a knife).   In a heavy dutch oven, heat butter and olive oil over medium heat until butter begins to froth.   Add carrot, celery, onion, garlic mixture, along with the bacon/pancetta and cook about 10 minutes, or until bacon/pancetta starts to brown, (see below).   Remove any excess fat with a spoon...I just use paper towels wadded up and put in the dutch oven with it sitting on an angle until there is very little fat left, then toss the paper towels.  Add ground beef and ground pork and cook until the meat loses its color.  Raise heat and add wine and beef broth, continuing to cook until reduced to half.  Turn heat down to simmer and add oregano, salt, red pepper flakes, basil and nutmeg and cook for about 15-20 minutes.  Add crushed tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer, and add milk, (when I made this batch, I had some half & half in the frig so used that...just makes it more luxurious).  Let sauce simmer partially covered, for about 2-3 hours, letting it cook down, (see below).  If you feel that the sauce is getting too dry, add another few tbsp of milk.  Bon appetit!

here you can see the pancetta, tomatoes, carrots and garlic...

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