Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Courgetti Bolognese

One of my favourite meals is spaghetti bolognese so I thought I'd post my own version of this which has two possibilities in terms of meat: either beef mince or the leaner turkey mince.

Originally, pancetta would be used as well as the beef or if one were to follow the great Italian cook Gennaro Contaldo's recipe, he uses a combination of pork, veal and beef mince. However, I decided to try turkey mince not so long ago and was very pleased with the results. Since getting my spiralizer the first thing I tried was making courgetti, and I found that it works very well with this dish. Of course, you can always have normal spaghetti too!

My Courgetti Bolognese (dairy-free, gluten -free)

Serves 4

500 g of either beef or turkey mince

1 onion chopped
2 carrots
2 celery stalks
1 clove of garlic chopped finely

a good splash of red wine (if you don't have any wine, I sometimes use red wine vinegar or white wine vinegar to give the dish the acidic flavour)
salt and pepper
a can of chopped tomatoes
2 bay leaves
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary or 1 and a half tbsp of dried rosemary
2tbsp of tomato puree or tomato ketchup
500 ml of chicken stock

4 courgettes or 450 grams of spaghetti 

Extra Virgin Olive Oil (optional)

Start by browning your mince in a large frying pan- you do not need any oil for this because the fat will come from the meat itself.
At this stage it is important to break up the mince so that it doesn't form big clumps, so I like using either two metal egg flips or you can use a whisk to break it up.

Once it is browned, I drain most of the fat from the mince and then add (in this order) the wine, salt and pepper, the soffritto (onion, carrots, celery), the garlic and the chopped tomatoes. Then add the rosemary and bay leaves and tomato puree or ketchup. After this, add about 350 ml of chicken stock, the remainder can be used if the bolognese needs a little loosening up. 

Simmer on a low heat with a lid on for at least 40 minutes.

Meanwhile you can prepare the courgetti or spaghetti once the bolognese has been cooking for about 25 minutes. You can have the courgetti raw or I like to soften it for a couple of minutes in a frying pan with a little drizzle of olive oil.

If you don't have a spiralizer, a good way of making courgetti (actually more like parpadelle) is to use a peeler and peel long paper thin strips of courgette.

Once the bolognese has become a beautiful rich colour and consistency, either mix some with your courgetti or spaghetti and then top off with a good spoonful of sauce on top. I then always pour olive oil on top and add a little pepper. Of course you can also add cheese, but because I'm allergic I leave that out!

I hope you enjoy my recipe, leave any comments below to let me know what you think!

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