Homemade Bolognese Sauce
Adapted from a Food & Wine recipe.
  • 1 pound ground beef or veal (or half pound of each)
  • 2 slices of bacon, minced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup minced carrot
  • ½ cup minced celery
  • ½ cup minced onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or pushed through a garlic press
  • Kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground sage
  • ½ teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil OR 1 tablespoon fresh basil (chiffonade)
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 2 15-ounce cans petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • ¾ cup cream
  • Pepper
  • Optional: 4 tablespoons tomato paste (I added this to the recipe after making it many times, see directions below for notes)
  1. In a large cast-iron casserole (or pot), cook minced bacon in the olive oil over medium heat, for about 5 minutes until bacon is well cooked, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add the carrots, celery, and onion. Sprinkle evenly with a pinch of salt and cook over medium heat about 5 minutes. Add the fresh garlic and stir.
  3. Add the ground meat along with the sage, parsley, bay leaf and oregano. If using dried basil, add that now as well. Season evenly with a few pinches of salt. Cook until meat is cooked through and no longer pink, stirring regularly.
  4. Add the wine and cook until the wine has reduced significantly, about 3-5 minutes. Add UNdrained tomatoes and cook until liquid is reduced by about half, around 5 minutes.
  5. Add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. At this point if you are using tomato paste, add that as well. (Note: originally I did not have tomato paste in the recipe. The sauce base originally came out with more of a broth consistency - still unbelievably tasty, but you have to serve the pasta in a bowl. This last time I added tomato paste and it helped to thicken the sauce base up and the flavor remained the same. I will be using the tomato paste in this recipe from now on).
  6. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer gently for about 10 minutes.
  7. Remove the bay leaf. Add the cream and, if using fresh basil, the basil. Stir and add salt to taste if needed. Finish off with a few shakes of pepper.
Recipe by This Week for Dinner at https://thisweekfordinner.com/homemade-bolognese-sauce/