It’s been overcast and rainy for days in Atlanta, so I’m thinking tonight calls for some comfort food. I grew up eating and preparing my mother’s fabulous bolognese sauce, that is, until I stumbled upon this recipe. From The Silver Palate cookbook, Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso created this amazingly flavorful Italian specialty, and it’s now become my “go-to” spaghetti.
TOSSED SALAD WITH BLUE CHEESE DRESSING
SPAGHETTI BOLOGNESE (Adapted from The Silver Palate cookbook)
3/4 cup dry red wine
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 lb. ground beef
3 TBSP unsalted butter
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped carrot
8 oz. prosciutto, cut into julienne
4 cloves garlic
1 TBSP flour
1/2 cup beef stock
1 TBSP dried oregano
1 TBSP dried basil
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
2 – 28 oz. cans plum tomatoes with their juice (San Marzano if you can find it)
1 – 6 oz can tomato paste
2 TBSP minced garlic
1/2 cup slivered fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley (optional)
Add 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil to a pot and heat. Then add the ground beef, breaking up with a spatula. Cook until browned. Then remove the beef with a slotted spoon to a bowl.
Add the butter to the pot and melt. Then add the onion, carrots and celery. Cook until translucent ~ 10 minutes.
Add the 4 whole cloves of garlic and chopped prosciutto. Sprinkle 1 TBSP flour over. Cook another 5 minutes.
Return the beef to the pot. Then add the tomatoes, red wine, beef broth, oregano, basil, nutmeg and salt and pepper. Simmer for 1 hour, partially covered.
After an hour, add the tomato paste and cook uncovered another 15 minutes.
Finally, add the minced garlic, fresh basil and parsley (if using) and simmer another 15 minutes.
There you have it — a rich, thick, hearty, burst of flavor in each mouthful, pot of bolognese sauce. And another plus – the sauce freezes beautifully. Oh, and P.S. – the sauce is even better after a day!
*Fresh pasta is always better than boxed. This refrigerated version is very good – they were out of thicker noodles, so I had to go with angel hair, but no matter – it’ll be great!
TOSSED SALAD WITH BLUE CHEESE DRESSING DRESSING (Adapted from Ree Drummond)
This dressing is super easy and just so much better than any bottled blue cheese dressing!
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup sour cream
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup blue cheese crumbles
Salt and pepper
In a bowl add the mayo, milk, sour cream and Worcestershire, and stir until combined. Stir in the blue cheese and add salt and pepper to taste.
Drizzle over your favorite salad. I’m using butter lettuce leaves, tomatoes and shredded carrots.
And here’s the Italian wine from Tuscany I’m going with. It’s an outstanding inexpensive medium to full-bodied chianti that will pair perfectly with this Italian dish and nicely round out the meal. It’s a 2011 Castiglioni Chianti.