It's a cold snowy, snowy day outside and probably a good day for soup for most people. But for me it's a day for a nice plate of pasta. A rich dish of a Bolognese Sauce sounds like a warm fuzzy blanket wrapped around you while sitting in front of a fire. Yes.....that's exactly what I'm going for!! Besides the fact that this was one of the dishes that we prepared in our cooking class in Italy and now one of my sons favorite, maybe he will cook with me??
2 LBS OF GROUND BEEF ( I USE THE 80/20 IN THIS ONE...YOU WANT SOME OF THAT FAT IN THERE...MAKES IT TASTIER) 1 LB GROUND VEAL 1 MEDIUM ONION CHOPPED 6 CLOVES OF GARLIC CHOPPED 2 TBLSP TOMATO PASTE 2 CANS CRUSHED TOMATOES 2 TBLSP OLIVE OIL SALT & PEPPER FRESH BASIL 1 TBLSP GARLIC POWDER 1 TBLSP PARSLEY 1/2 CUP OF PARMESAN CHEESE 1/2 CUP BREAD CRUMBS 1 EGG
***** I like the flavors of the ground veal in this sauce but you can just use the ground beef if you prefer or you can substitute the veal with pork sausage. Just take it out of it's casing and break it up in pieces. All are great...just depends on your personal preference.
I first start by preparing the meat as I would a meatball. This is where all the flavors come from in the sauce. So grab a big bowl and put all the meat in the bowl. To the meat, you can add the salt & pepper to season the meat, garlic powder, parsley, grated cheese, 1 egg and bread crumbs. Mix it all together with your hands. One trick with this and making meatballs in general...run warm water on your hands and actually throw in a handful or two. The warm water will help to break down the fat as you mix it and the meat will become softer and more tender. A handful or two will be perfect. And, of course, always let your meat sit on your counter for just a bit. Never work with it right out of the refrigerator.
Now your meat is all mixed up and ready to go. So you can heat the olive oil in a large saute pan and saute the chopped onion for just a few minutes to get it started. Then throw in the garlic and basil. saute until all are tender and soft.
Now add the meat into the pan and brown the meat breaking it up as it cooks until it is cooked through. When this is done you can add the tomato paste and 2 cans of crushed tomatoes. I so love the San Marzanos but always fall back on Contadina. I think they are a great product.
Now all you have to do is let this cook for about an hour. Let it simmer on low heat. One more trick is to leave the cover slightly tilted to let a little evaporation happen. this will help to make the sauce thicken as it cooks.
Now just boil the pasta of your choice, I used fettuccini here! Top this with some parmesan cheese....Amazing!!!
So this was the perfect comfort food for todays snowy weather. My son did not help me cook. I was a little disappointed that he choose to go outside with his friends and play football in the snow. Crazy...right??? But, all the boys enjoyed it when they were done freezing their butts off so that made me happy.