Just in case you're tired of all the excesses the holiday season brings and craving something simple, here's a sure fire guaranteed to please solution.
This bolognese sauce starts with a saute of celery, onions, carrots and garlic, seasoned with red pepper flakes, crumbled sage and a bay leaf and nutured along for a good 10 minutes or so to get the absolute most flavor out of the mix before chopped bacon and ground meat hit the pan. A few minutes later several glugs of good red wine join the party followed by a mere hint of tomato in the form of a little sauce and a touch of paste then several cups of good beef stock.
A 45 minute simmer and Bob's your uncle - minimal effort for fabulous flavor. As you can see, we enjoyed our meaty sauce on a bed of pillowy gnocchi, but almost any kind of pasta will do just fine.
Bolognese Meat Sauce (adapted from Nick Stellino's Mediterranean Flavors)
¼ cup olive oil
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (or more to taste)
½ cup finely chopped celery
½ cup finely chopped carrots
½ cup finely chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 large bay leaf
½ teaspoon crumbled dried sage
3 slices bacon, diced
1 pound extra lean ground beef
1/2 cup red wine
8 oz. can tomato sauce
2 Tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups beef stock
salt & pepper to taste
Heat olive oil until sizzling – add red pepper flakes, celery, carrots, onion, garlic, bay leaf, and sage and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium low and cook additional 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Increase heat to high, add bacon and beef and cook stirring constantly for 2 minutes until meat is no longer pink. Add wine and cook until almost evaporated – about 5 minutes. Add tomato sauce, paste & stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer covered for 30 minutes. Remove cover and simmer until sauce is thickened to desired consistency - approximately 15 minutes. Taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper as required.
A Year Ago - Apple Bourbon Country Style Pork Ribs