Bolognese is probably one of the most famous Italian sauces in the world. It takes time to make it, but it’s always a big satisfaction when you bring it to the table. Since the long slow cooking time, it’s a typical Sunday dish and when I make it, I generally make egg pasta while it cooks.This time I made very thin egg pasta sheets, Besciamella sauce and assembled the ultimate Lasagna. Click the links for the recipes. Fresh Egg Pasta. Besciamella Sauce. Lasagna.
But let’s get back to our Bolognese. I suggest to use a pretty fat cut of meat, coarse grounded (or you can even finely chop it by hand). You can use pretty cheap cut of beef, but this time I wanted to make it special and bought some nice marbled Wagyu or Kobe beef from Katagiri, my favorite Japanese grocery store in midtown east. The slow cooking melts the fat, giving an amazing texture to the sauce. The typical recipe from Bologna includes milk and pancetta, but I don’t use them for this sauce. Let’s call it Bolognese a-la-Ale, hope nobody from Bologna gets hurt. This is my version, but trust me, it’s delicious.
Pick the best and heaviest pot you have. I used my cast iron Staub, but a terra-cotta one may just do the job.
- 1 cup chopped Onion
- 1 cup chopped Celery
- 1 cup chopped Carrots
- 1 clove of Garlic
- 2 lbs grounded Wagyu Beef
- 1 liter beef stock (you can use cubes if you don’t have time to make it)
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Black Pepper
- Bay leaves
- 1 large can of Whole Pealed Tomatoes
- 1 bottle of crushed tomatoes.
- Tomato paste
- 1 glass of red wine
Start making a nice “soffritto” using EVOO, onion, carrots, celery and the clove of garlic. Let them get soft on a medium flame. On the side, bring to boil a pot with the beef stock. Once the soffritto starts turning golden add the beef and the bay leaves, and turn the flame to high. Make sure to stir and break the meet using a wooden spoon. Let it loose its water and as soon as it starts to gently fry, add the red wine. Let the wine evaporate, lower the flame and add two spoonfuls of tomato paste. If it gets too tick, use some of the beef stock. At this point, you are almost done. Add the tomatoes, crushed and whole pealed. Let it get to gently boil, set the flame to low and wait. It will need at least a couple of hours of slow cooking. Stir every 20 minutes. In case it gets too tick, add some of the stock, but never make it too watery.
After 3 hours of slow cooking you should have a very velvety sauce, with tiny pieces of meat. Cook your favorite pasta, better if fresh home made egg pasta and use this sauce. Spending all this time cooking for someone is like a declaration of love. Make sure you pick the right guests.