To get more vegetables into my husband and daughter, I went searching for a Bolognese sauce and found a delicious one from Emeril Lagasse but tweaked it based on my own tastes. We all three absolutely loved the recipe after I put my personal touches on it and ended up eating it for several days afterward!
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 ounces pancetta, diced
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onions
3/4 cup diced carrots
3/4 cup diced celery
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, minced
2 tablespoons fresh basil, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 pound ground beef
1/2 pound ground pork
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup red wine
1 28oz can whole, peeled tomatoes crushed in food processor
1 cup beef broth
2 teaspoons sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
1 pound spaghetti
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
In a large deep skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the pancetta and cook, stirring, until browned and the fat is rendered, 5 minutes. Add the onions, carrots and celery and cook, stirring, until soft, 5 minutes.
Add the garlic, salt, pepper, bay leaves, thyme, oregano, cinnamon, and nutmeg and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds.
Add the beef and pork, and cook, stirring, until no longer pink and cumbled, about 5 minutes.
Add the tomato paste and cook, 2 minutes.
Add the wine and cook, stirring, to deglaze the pan and remove any browned bits sticking to the bottom of the pan, and until half of the liquid is evaporated, about 2 minutes.
Add the pureed tomatoes, beef broth, and sugar and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, to keep the sauce from sticking to the bottom of the pan, until the sauce is thickened and flavorful, about 1 1/2 hours.
Add the butter and parsley, stir well, and simmer for 2 minutes. Discard the bay leaves and adjust the seasoning, to taste.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and return the water to a low boil. Cook, stirring occasionally to prevent the noodles from sticking, until al dente, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain in a colander.
Add the pasta to the sauce, tossing to coat. Add 1/2 cup of the cheese and toss to blend. Divide among pasta bowls and serve with the cheese passed tableside.