Seriously Good Bolognese Sauce
Makes 4-6 servings
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium onions, finely chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 celery stalks, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
2 carrots, peeled, finely chopped (about 3/4 cup)
3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
8 ounces lean ground beef
8 ounces ground veal*
6 strips bacon, finely chopped
3/4 cup red wine
3 cups (approximately) beef stock
2 cans tomato paste
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Any herbs you fancy - oregano, marjoram, or thyme
A few pinches of red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and coarsely ground black pepper
1 cup milk
If you don't have a food processor to chop the veg, use a cheese grater - it'll be hard going with the stringiness of celery, but it will get it to the fineness needed better than straight chopping. Just watch those fingers and knuckles - there are enough types of meat in this recipe already!
Heat oil in a large heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add bacon, cook until browned. Add onions, celery, and carrots. Sauté until soft, 8-10 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute. Add beef and veal. Sauté, breaking up meat chunks with the back of a spoon as finely as possible, until browned - about 15 minutes. Add wine; boil 1 minute, stirring often and scraping up browned bits. Add 2 1/2 cups stock and tomato paste, Worcestershire, herbs, and red pepper; stir to blend. Reduce heat to very low and gently simmer, stirring occasionally, until flavors meld, about 1 1/2 hours. Season with salt and pepper if desired.
Warm milk gently in microwave; gradually add to sauce. Cover pot with lid slightly ajar and simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes. Add more stock by 1/4-cupfuls to thin if needed.
|This is one of those sauces that is better if made ahead of time and slowly reheated after having a chance to commingle. Plus it freezes well - allow to thaw, or reheat at very low power in the microwave.|
Serve over piles of your favourite pasta and top with drifts of freshly grated Parmesan. And do make sure and drink the rest of that bottle of wine with it.
*You can use all beef if you prefer.