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Spaghetti alla Bolognese

Posted on December 19, 2011.


Bolognese sauce is a meat-based sauce for pasta originating in Bologna, Italy. This is a variation of a traditional Bolognese sauce that uses hot cherry peppers to spice it up. A traditional Bolognese recipe does not use tomatoes, but I add tomato paste near the end to thicken the sauce and accentuate the rich flavors of this dish. Be careful when adding salt to this dish, since both the pancetta and meat stock have a lot of salt in them. Also, you may not need as much olive oil depending on the fat content of the pancetta.


1/2 lb of Beef shoulder, chopped
Pork 1/4 lb
Pancetta 1/4 lb
3 cloves garlic, sliced
1 yellow onion, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
1 carrot, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 hot cherry peppers, sliced
1 fresh rosemary sprig
1 fresh thyme sprig
2 flat leaf parsley sprigs
1/2 cup red wine
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
3 tablespoons tomato paste (1 small can)
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons olive oil
Pasta cooked al dente


In pre-heated pan on high heat, thoroughly brown meat, and then scrape into a bowl.

In the same pan on medium to high heat, add olive oil and cook garlic until golden brown, and then discard it. Then use the garlic infused oil in the same pan to brown pancetta for 5 minutes. Add onion, celery, and carrot, then saute until onion is golden brown. Deglaze with red wine and cook until wine is reduced (about 3 minutes).

Stir in 2 tablespoons flour and cook for 2 minutes before next step.

Add meat, peppers, and stock; bring to boil, let simmer, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Create a ´bouquet garni´ with the cheesecloth by rolling together 1 fresh rosemary sprig, 1 fresh thyme sprig, and 2 flat leaf parsley sprigs. Tie the ends with string or strips of the cheesecloth. Place bouquet garni in the sauce.

Simmer and keep covered for up to 3 hours.

Stir in tomato paste and cook for an additional 45 minutes.

Mix with pasta and serve with shaved Parmesan garnish.


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Posted By: Chief Foodie Officer