Friday, May 5, 2017

My Bolognese sauce, as per my husband's request

My Bolognese sauce / O meu bolonhesa

I started blogging about food in 2006 (sometimes I find it hard to believe I am still here, to be honest) and for years now many people have written to me to tell me they learned how to cook with me (Brazilians, since I write in Portuguese, too). Every time I read the emails I feel joy in my heart, for I know how liberating learning how to cook can be – it was for me.

So here we are, almost eleven years later, and this time the “revolution” is happening in my home: my husband has been learning how to cook. :) It started with sandwiches, it evolved to salads and soups (very good salads and soups, by the way) and days ago he tried to make one of our favorite dishes: Bolognese sauce. I arrived home late after a tiresome day at the office and smelled something wonderful when the elevator door opened – for a moment I thought the smell could be coming from my neighbors’, but those people, besides being incredibly noisy and rude, don’t cook food that smell that great. :)

For my surprise, the smell was coming from my apartment and as I walked in I found my husband smiling at me: “surprise! I made your Bolognese sauce!” – I helped him cook the linguine and we had a delicious dinner.

He then told me he was a bit confused during the preparation of the sauce and that he had searched the blog to make sure he remembered all the steps – “I could not find the recipe on TK”, he said, and I told him I had not published it here. He said “it’s about time”, so here we are: I am sharing with you my Bolognese sauce – and I call it “my Bolognese” because I know it is not the most authentic one out there, but it is the one I have been making for years and that my husband loves so much. I don’t always have carrots and/or celery at home for the sofrito, so onions and garlic are the aromatics of choice; also, I hardly ever have 3 hours to wait for the sauce to come together, so mine is ready in 30 minutes or so. I hope you give it a go and if you do, please let me know how it went.

My Bolognese sauce
own recipe

1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely diced
3 large garlic cloves, minced
250g beef mince
salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup (60ml) dry red wine
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 400g (14oz) can peeled tomatoes
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 bay leaves
5 sprigs of fresh thyme
handful of fresh basil leaves or fresh oregano leaves
300g linguine

In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic, cook for 1-2 minutes or until fragrant, then add the beef and break it down with the spoon into smaller pieces. Cook, stirring occasionally, until beef is well browned. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the wine and cook again for 2-3 minutes or until wine is reduced – using a wooden spoon, scrape the brown bits in the bottom of the saucepan for extra flavor.

Add the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the canned tomatoes and smash them with a potato masher. Fill ¾ of the can with water, swirl it around and add to the saucepan. Season again with salt and pepper, add the sugar, the bay leaves, the thyme and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes or until thickened. Add the basil/oregano, stir to combine, remove the bay leaves and the thyme sprigs, cover and remove from the heat.
Cook linguine in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente. Drain and stir in the sauce. Serve immediately.

Serves 3


Marina G said...

What a cute story and such a nice compliment that he searched your blog for the recipe!! I love this sauce too, so I will give yours a try. Thank you!!

Lynn D. said...

I just sat down to read your blog while my Bolognese is simmering on the stove. I made it almost exactly like you make yours, but I added some mushrooms this time. After reading your recipe I got up and added one teaspoon sugar to mine. I'm timid. I so enjoy reading your blog. For various reasons I don't do much baking, so I especially like your savory recipes. Oh, and I am a big fan of Suzy Derkins!

Patricia Scarpin said...

Hey, Marina, thanks! I hope you like it, dear!

Lynn, I loooove the idea of adding mushrooms to this sauce - yum! I am happy you commented, so nice to meet you! ;)

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