You can’t find a fresh, ripe, beautiful red tomato here in Ohio in January. You just can’t. So how could you possibly make a bolognese in the depths of winter? Make a white bolognese. Skip the tomatoes altogether and make a very Italian specialty. In doing so, you will make my single most favorite thing to cook.
It is my most favorite of all favorites. Really, truly. The kind that my small family of three will piggishly devour an entire pound of pasta, with Cherub (remember, she’s three) helping herself to thirds. It is, in a word, delicious. Amazingly delicious. Well, that’s two. But I mean it: if you have yet to make a recipe from this blog, you should make this one.
White Bolognese, adapted from The Silver Spoon
1 T olive oil
2 strips of bacon
1/2 finely chopped yellow onion
1 scrubbed and finely chopped carrot
1 stalk finely chopped celery
1 pound lean ground beef (I used buffalo this time, for fun)
1/2 pound ground pork
2 cloves garlic
1 glass of white wine
1c (or less) of chicken stock, preferably homemade
1 T heavy cream
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large saute pan, heat the olive oil and add the bacon. Cook for 4 or 5 minutes over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, carrot and celery. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and the ground beef/buffalo and ground pork. Increase heat to high and brown the meat. When brown, add the wine and cook until evaporated (about 5 minutes). Add a ladleful of chicken stock, salt and pepper and reduce heat to very low. Cook for at least an hour an a half, adding stock as necessary to keep the sauce moist. I let it go for most of the afternoon. Which only is a problem as you want to continue sampling the sauce. It can be almost gone by dinner if you’re not careful. You could even do this process in a slow cooker. Wouldn’t hurt a thing. Just before serving, add the cream.
Serve with fresh pasta, if you have the time. Today’s pasta recipe was from Zeus: 1 cup of semolina flour, 1 cup regular flour, 1 tablespoon of olive oil and three whole eggs. Mix together on a clean counter top, then knead about 10 minutes. Slide into a Ziploc and allow to rest for at least 30 minutes prior to rolling out and cutting. This recipe resulted in lovely soft dough after it rested and was easily rolled and cut into spaghetti that cooked in three minutes.
Playlist included Ready to Start, by Arcade Fire.