Technically I can’t really call this a bolognese as it’s only really a bolognese when made in Bologna, Italia. We actually visited Bologna for a day trip last year just to try the real deal ‘ragù alla bolognese’ and it was quite special. So here’s my version of a very slow cooked and rich meat ragù (aka spag bol) inspired by the famous Italian gravy. I used a similar method used in my Slo ‘n’ Lo Chilli Con Carne recipe. We dished ours up with some fresh tagliatelle, but you can use spaghetti or any type of pasta that you like.
The recipe serve 4
4 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped or crushed
1 large onion, diced
200-250g button or closed cup mushrooms, sliced
400ml tin chopped tomatoes
500ml vegetable stock
2 tbsp tomato puree
2 tbsp basil olive oil (we used Olive Olive basil infused oil) or extra virgin olive oil
400-450g lean beef mince (we used Waitrose Hereford beef mince)
325ml red wine
Bunch basil, leaves roughly choppe
Fresh tagliatelle or spaghetti
1 tsp tomato ketchup
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 tsp Italian herb seasoning
Parmesan grated or sliced to serve
500g fresh pasta
- Add 1 tbsp. basil infused oil or extra virgin olive to a large, deep saucepan or cast iron casserole dish. Turn heat to high and once smoking hot, add the mince until it has just browned. Remove and drain the meat.
- Turn down the heat and in the same pan add the remaining oil, cooking the onions for approx. 5 minutes until they begin to soften and brown. Next stir in the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes.
- Add the tomato puree, make sure the onions are completely coated and cook for 2-3 minutes. Pour in the red wine, and let the sauce reduce on a gentle simmer for approx. 8 minutes, or until the sauce begins to thicken.
- Stir in the Worcestershire sauce, tomato ketchup, Italian herb seasoning, browned mince, chopped tomatoes and stock. Simmer on a very low heat for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally. Add more stock or water if the sauce becomes too dry.
- Once cooked for desired amount of time (the longer the better) season with salt and pepper, turn off the heat and stir in the fresh basil leaves.
- Cook the pasta as per packet instructions, top with the meat ragù and parmesan.