This delicious recipe really delivers the punch you want and expect from an authentic Italian ragu! The secret is (as usual!) in the slow cooking time and the premium ingredients.
Give yourself plenty of time with this one! It only takes around 45mins to get cooking but then you want it to reduce down for a good 1.5-2hrs. So start early and you can even bring it up to temp again just before serving.
Serves 4-6 very hungry punters, or 8 not-so hungry diners.
- A decent slug of good quality Olive Oil eg. 1/4c
- 1 large onion – halved and sliced
- 2-3 celery – sliced
- 4 garlic – finely diced
- 500g Premium Mince Beef
- Red wine (optional)
- 3-4 Tbsp Tomato Paste – add more for an even richer tomato flavour
- 2 tins Mutti crushed tomatoes – even the Italians say this is the best brand!
- 1 carrot grated – this is your natural sugar content
- 2x Beef Oxo cubes with 3 cups hot water or 3 cups beef stock
- 1 Tbsp Italian Seasoning
- 1-2 tsp sugar (optional added sugar – not very traditional but we like it like that)
- Salt & pepper
- In a large pot (because we will fill it high and then it will reduce down), add your oil, onion, celery and garlic. Gently heat for 5mins or so until all are well softened but not browned.
- Turn up the heat and add your mince to brown all over then add some red wine if you are using and cook until the alcohol is fully evaporated.
- Turn the heat back down to a simmering temperature and add your tomato paste, tinned tomatoes, stock, grated carrot, Italian Seasoning and season well with plenty of cracked pepper and a bit of salt – be careful because there’s already a lot of salty flavours in here so you don’t need to add much!
- Your mince should be well under water at this point. Have a taste of the starter juice and add a little sugar to tone down the tartness if you prefer.
- Bring to a gentle simmer and stir occasionally until your bolognese has reduced down to a consistency you like – don’t let it catch on the bottom of the pan! Some care and attention is needed here but it’ll be well worth it in the end.
We like to stir through some fresh basil just before serving or you can leave a plant on the table for guests to serve themselves.
This is the ultimate mix for eating with pasta, making Lasagna, turning into mince pies or just eating on toast. Especially with a good grating of parmesan on top.