The best spaghetti bolognese recipe

The best spaghetti bolognese recipe Andrew Balmer

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl
    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It’s…

  • 4 rashers smoked streaky bacon, finely chopped
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped

    Onion

    un-yun
    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 2 carrots, trimmed and finely chopped

    Carrot

    ka-rot
    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • 2 celery sticks, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2-3 sprigs rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped

    Rosemary

    rose-mar-ee
    Rosemary’s intense, fragrant aroma has traditionally been paired with lamb, chicken and game…

  • 500g beef mince

For the bolognese sauce

  • 2 x 400g tins plum tomatoes
  • small pack basil, leaves picked, ¾ finely chopped and the rest left whole for garnish

    Basil

    ba-zil
    Most closely associated with Mediterranean cooking but also very prevalent in Asian food, the…

  • 1 tsp dried oregano

    Oregano

    or-ee-gar-no
    Closely related to marjoram, of which it is the wild equivalent, oregano has a coarser, more…

  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped (optional)
  • 125ml red wine
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

To season and serve

  • 75g parmesan, grated, plus extra to serve

    Parmesan

    parm-ee-zan
    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…

  • 400g spaghetti
  • crusty bread, to serve (optional)
Watch recipe video
  1. Put a large saucepan on a medium heat and add 1 tbsp olive oil.
  2. Add 4 finely chopped bacon rashers and fry for 10 mins until golden and crisp.
  3. Reduce the heat and add the 2 onions, 2 carrots, 2 celery sticks, 2 garlic cloves and the leaves from 2-3 sprigs rosemary, all finely chopped, then fry for 10 mins. Stir the veg often until it softens.
  4. Increase the heat to medium-high, add 500g beef mince and cook stirring for 3-4 mins until the meat is browned all over.
  5. Add 2 tins plum tomatoes, the finely chopped leaves from ¾ small pack basil, 1 tsp dried oregano, 2 bay leaves, 2 tbsp tomato purée, 1 beef stock cube, 1 deseeded and finely chopped red chilli (if using), 125ml red wine and 6 halved cherry tomatoes. Stir with a wooden spoon, breaking up the plum tomatoes.
  6. Bring to the boil, reduce to a gentle simmer and cover with a lid. Cook for 1 hr 15 mins stirring occasionally, until you have a rich, thick sauce.
  7. Add the 75g grated parmesan, check the seasoning and stir.
  8. When the bolognese is nearly finished, cook 400g spaghetti following the pack instructions.
  9. Drain the spaghetti and stir into the bolognese sauce. Serve with more grated parmesan, the remaining basil leaves and crusty bread, if you like.

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