I’ve been on the hunt for a perfect bolognese sauce for quite some time now. I’ve also had a request from my number one commenter (Jacks!) for such a sauce. I find that I love meat sauces when I order them in a restaurant but I’ve never made one that I’ve been crazy about. I’ve come to the conclusion that this in an essential life skill I need. That being said, my perception of life skills may or may not be slightly skewed….
Learning how to stay on budget?? Meh, I’ll worry about that later.
Making the perfect bolognese sauce?? So very important right this second!
The past few weeks have involved a lot of recipe research and I’m happy to report that I’ve got big plans for tagliatelle bolognese this weekend and with much luck, hopefully a post about it. I know, I know…wild and reckless weekend plans. I can’t be tamed.
You’re probably wondering why with all the talk of meat sauce there’s none pictured. Stay with me. All this research really got me in the mood for spaghetti and finally last night I had to have it. It was clearly not feasible at 7pm on Monday to start a bolognese sauce that takes hours and hours to simmer to deliciousness. So, what I did make is my favorite basic tomato sauce and I thought I’d share it. I came across this recipe from Ina Garten several years ago and have been using it ever since. There’s not a lot to say other than it’s easy and consistently delicious. What more can you ask for really? Along the way I’ve made a few tweaks to the original recipe by adding a pinch of red pepper flakes for a little spice and a couple tablespoons of heavy cream at the end. I also really like to puree my sauce in the blender so that its super smooth, but this is definitely not necessary. Just my personal preference. I like smooth sauce. Deal with it.
Basic Tomato Sauce (serves 6)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- pinch of red pepper flakes (add more if you like it spicy)
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 1 28-ounce can crushed or pureed tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- freshly ground pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet or medium saucepan. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 8-10 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, cook for 1 minute more. Add the wine and let simmer until almost all the liquid has evaporated, about 3-5 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, parsley, salt and pepper. Let simmer for 15-30 minutes. Finally, stir in the heavy cream and puree in a blender if desired or serve as is (unblended).
recipe adapted from Ina Garten