Last Night I made a Bologonese Sauce… or did I?

Last Night I made a Bologonese Sauce… or did I?



This is probably one of the most bastardised recipes on the planet and who can blame the city of Bologne in Italy from occasionally getting very ticked off. For those interested in the etiology of the recipe, the above link will give you a clue or two.


I made a Meat Sauce, loosely based on Bolognese, but not and besides I had it with some Gnocci and no0t with the more traditional Paparadelle or Tagliatelle noodles that the orginal sauce was made to be used with. Italian cooks say that the meat just does not ‘cling’ to finer pastas like Spaghetti, hence the ubiguitious Spag Bol flies in the face of Italian logic and taste.


I have, many times made the fully traditional Bolognese and it is a delight, specially if you have the time for a long slow cook. The sauce I made last night was cooked in about 2 hours.


Meat Sauce

1 kilo of pork mince (not to fine, I like it to have a bit of fat and be coarser.

2 large Onions chopped into smallish dice

2 – 3 cloves of garlic crushed

2 – 3 rashes of bacon chopped to match the mince

Good splidge of EVO… you are going to eat it, so use good oil.

1 jar of Peter Watson Basic Tomato sauce

1 375 gr tin of cherry tomato (organic)

750 ml of water.


Fry the Onion in EVO until it starts to become golden. Add the finely chopped bacon and garlic and fry until the bacon is cooked. Add the pork, breaking it up with a large fork, I like it to be well cooked and starting to get some colour. Add the two tomato products and break the cherry tomatoes up a little with a fork. Add the water and place a lid on the pan and cook on a slow heat until the meat is cooked and the sauce beginning to thicken.


I served this with Gnocci and added a good handful of chopped parsley and basil, along with some salt and pepper and a good shake of Balsamic reduction. (for the sweetness and tang). I grated some good Parmesan over the top.


It was delicious. It just wasn’t Bolognese sauce.


Now for those of you determined to be traditionalists, then the following is a recipe for a proper Bolognese Sauce and remember, it is used on wide pasta of your choice.


2 tbsp olive oil

6 rashers of streaky ‘pancetta’ bacon, chopped

2 large onions, chopped

3 garlic cloves, crushed

2 carrots, chopped

Stick of celery chopped fine

1kg minced beef

2 large glasses of red wine

2x400g cans chopped tomatoes

2 fresh or dried bay leaves

salt and freshly ground black pepper


Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan and fry the bacon until golden over a medium heat. Add the onions and garlic, frying until softened. Increase the heat and add the minced beef. Fry it until it has browned. Pour in the wine and boil until it has reduced in volume by about a third. Reduce the temperature and stir in the tomatoes and celery. Cover with a lid and simmer over a gentle heat for 2 – 2½ hours until it’s rich and thickened, stirring occasionally.


Serve with your choice of pasta, enough for 4 good eaters.

~ by peterwatson on March 22, 2013.

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