Basic Bolognese

So it’s been a little bit quiet over here on the blog…sorry about that. I landed my first full-time job as a dietitian around this time last year and I’ve spent that time trying to figure out how to manage work + Instagram + being a newly wed + buying a house + getting a new kitty + fitting in life in general…it’s been a whirlwind of a year, but a really fun one too.  I finally have the time to get back into recipe developing and blogging, so here I am! I thought I’d keep it simple with a meal hubby and I cook all the time, Bolognese sauce.

Bolognese is a staple in our house and we’ve made so many different variations over the years that it’s well and truly evolved into a comfort food. The whole process of making it feels so homely and I love to have it blipping away on the stove over the weekend, and how the smell drifts through the whole house.

When Dave and I first started cooking together, we were big meat eaters and always tried to pack in as much meat as possible into every meal. These days, we’re a bit more health conscious so we follow a more flexitarian style of eating, i.e. consciously choosing to eat less meat but not completely cutting it out. This bolognese sauce is a reflection of our progression towards eating less meat and I think it’s a really great starting place for those of you who want to explore a more sustainable way of eating.

Ingredients:

3 tbsp Australian  extra virgin olive oil

1 red onion, finely chopped

2 celery sticks,  finely chopped

2 carrots, grated

1 zucchini, grated

3 garlic cloves, crushed   

300g mushrooms, sliced

300g beef mince

2 spicy Italian style sausages, meat removed from the skins

140g (3 tbsp) tomato paste

3/4 cup red wine

3 x 400g tinned whole tomatoes   

2 sprigs rosemary

2 bay leaves

Method:

  1. Heat  olive oil  in a pan on  medium heat and add onion. Cook for 1 minute until onion has softened slightly.  Add celery, carrot and  zucchini and increase heat  to medium-high and cook for a further 6-­‐8 minutes until the vegetables are well cooked and soft.
  2.  Add garlic and mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes.
  3.  Add beef mince and sausage meat and cook for  5 minutes until the meat is cooked through.
  4.  Add  tomato paste and cook for 3 minutes. Add wine and cook for another 3 minutes. Season with  salt, pepper, rosemary  and bay leaves.  Add the tinned tomatoes, being sure to rinse out the remaining tomato puree from the tin with water.  Simmer until the sauce  is thick and rich, I like to cook it for at least 2 hours.
  5. Enjoy with pasta, in a lasagne, on a baked potato, or top with mash to make a shepherd’s pie. Freeze any leftovers.

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