Spaghetti Bolognese

A deliciously rich spag bol that will really bring out the flavour of an earthy red wine. This will go down a treat at any dinner party or family meal. This is one of my favourite recipes to try out new herbs and spices with so don’t be scared to experiment with new tastes!

Ingredients:

Serves 5:

– 400g dried spaghetti

– 1tbsp extra virgin olive oil

– 500g beef or lamb mince (I use frozen as it’s cheaper but you can use any kind)

– 2x 400g cans of Italian chopped tomatoes

– 1 large yellow onion (roughly chopped)

– 1 yellow pepper (roughly chopped)

– 1 red pepper (roughly chopped)

– 2 garlic cloves (finely chopped)

– 100g pancetta or 2 chopped streaky bacon rashers (optional)

– 100g chopped chorizo

– a glass of red wine (I use Blossom Hill red wine, it’s nothing fancy but it does the trick)

– 1x beef stock cube

– 4 or 5 sundried tomatoes (chopped)

– handful of fresh parsley (chopped)

– a few leaves of fresh basil (chopped)

– sprinkle of dried chilli (optional)

– salt and pepper (to taste)

– grated Parmesan (optional)

Method

1. Heat the olive oil in an wok or large frying pan.

2. Add the onions, peppers, garlic, chorizo and pancetta if you’re using. Keep on a medium heat and stir often, making sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Cook until the veg has softened.

3. Add your mince. (If you’re using frozen mince you don’t even need to defrost before cooking!) Cook until the meat starts to brown, being sure to break up any large clumps.

4. Add the red wine, chopped tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, herbs, beef stock cube. Add your dried chilli if you’re using it (add sparingly as too much will make your spag Bol very spicy!)

5. Stir everything together and bring to the boil.

6. Put on a low heat, pop the lid on and  leave to simmer, stirring occasionally. Cook for at least 45 minutes, the longer the better. Longer time will lead to a thicker sauce and it’ll give the meat more time to infuse with the flavours.

7. 10 minutes before your bolognese is finished, bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil.

8. Add your spaghetti and cook for 8 minutes or until tender but still firm to the bite.

9. Reserve a mug of cooking water and drain the pasta.

10. Once drained, put the spaghetti back into its pot and loosen with cooking water if needed.

11. Season your bolognese to taste with salt and pepper if needed.

12. Divide the spaghetti bolognese into 5 plates and serve (making sure everything is nice and hot before serving.) Top with basil leaves and Parmesan and dig in!

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