This is what I make on those special occasions, especially if I need to make an impression of my cooking skills 😉
How did Spaghetti Bolognese become one of my preferred dishes to cook? Italian cuisine used to be my favourite at one point in time. This is way before I fell in love with my Malayali food. When I moved out of Kerala, there was an excitement to cook so many new things as the ingredients would be available in Bangalore. Italian food intrigued me. It was easy to find fresh basil, oregano and other herbs. I wouldn’t need to search shop after shop for parmesan or mozzarella cheese like I used to do back home, about 15 years back.
Now that I think about those days, I feel so grateful to my family for being so patient in finding these ingredients. I remember giving the shopping list to my father on a Friday evening, so I could cook on the weekend. Everyone used to encourage me to try new stuff and get everything in place. How lucky was I?
So one day in Bangalore, right before my vacations, I get this compelling idea to make Italian food for my family once I go back home. “What should be on the menu? Umm… let’s explore the college library” I thought. I remember fetching all those heavy books on Italian cuisine, and the librarian didn’t seem very happy about it. Anyway, I decided to make Minestrone soup, handmade ravioli pasta, creamy mushroom risotto, spaghetti bolognese and Panna cotta! My goodness, what was I thinking then?!
The real madness was when I decided to buy all the main ingredients and take it back home. Bangalore to Thrissur on an over-night bus:). Fresh basil, check. Thyme, check. Parmesan cheese, check. Arborio rice, check. My bag was super heavy with all the ingredients. But, keeping all that compulsive behaviour aside, it all became worthy in the end when I saw my family’s excitement to try the food.
So you ask me why this is one of my favourite recipes? Because I know that it will definitely bring a smile to people’s faces. 🙂
- 500 grams Spaghetti
- 250 grams Minced beef
- 250 grams Minced pork
- 1 no Onion finely chopped
- 1 no Carrot(medium sized) finely chopped
- 1 stalk Celery finely chopped
- 6-7 nos Garlic finely chopped
- 4 large size Tomato without the skin and seed, crushed
- 4 tbsp Olive oil
- 5-6 nos Fresh basil leaves
- 1/2 tsp Dry oregano
- 2 nos Bay leaf
- as required Water
- to taste Salt and pepper
- 1 cup Red wine
- 2 tbsp Tomato paste
- 2 nos Stock cubes
- 3 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- Heat oil in a skillet, add the minced meat and saute for 4-5 minutes while breaking all the lumps on medium-high heat. Keep it aside.
- To the remaining oil, add in the onion, carrot, celery and garlic. Saute until the colour changes slightly.
- Now add in the tomato paste, herbs, meat, tomatoes and saute for 3-4 minutes.
- Add wine on a high heat and reduce it. Then add the Worcestershire sauce, water, stock cubes and simmer for 35-45 minutes on a low heat to infuse all the flavours in the sauce.
- Boil the pasta in salt water till it's al dente as per the package instructions. Then drain it well and add it to the sauce. Adjust the seasoning as per taste.
- Garnish with grated parmesan cheese and basil. Serve hot.
- In case you do not consume beef or pork, you can substitute it with lamb.