Pasta Bolognese Recipe. Sephardi Variations

Pasta Bolognese is the lazy-but-health-minded cook’s gastronomic dream actualized. Deconstructed Pasta and Meatballs. To parody Mark Twain, Pasta Bolognese is nothing but Sloppy Joe with a college education. You might just enjoy the dish more often if there are no meatballs to shape and simmer. I just served this for dinner to my tribe, and I watched with great pleasure as kids big and small demolished the dish at an alarming rate. I suspect the kids were tinkled pink to see their bubbie could get as messy as them! I am used to making a racket with pasta sauce: Just take a look at this express Pasta Bolognese I contrived in a flash from leftover hamburgers!

Not only that: you might, like me, tinker with your Pasta Bolognese, play around with the seasonings and the kind of meat, highjack the Italian Pasta Classic and end up, as I just did, with a Moroccan Lamb Pasta. Sorry, this Moroccan cook just can’t help it! Scroll down, you’ll see how I pull this off.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1 large onion, cut in chunks
  • 3 ribs celery, peeled and cut in chunks
  • 1 bunch flat parsley
  • 1 bunch basil, leaves only
  • 1 large carrot, shredded
  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 6 cups canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup dry red wine, optional
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons oregano
  • 1 pound spaghetti, tagliatelle or other flat pasta, cooked according to manufacturer's instructions (Gluten-Free Perfect too!)

Instructions

Heat the oil in a large skillet with sides. In a food processor, Finely grind the garlic. Add the onion, celery, parsley and basil, and grind fine but not mushy. Add the ground mixture and the shredded carrot to the skillet, and saute until most of the liquids evaporate. Add the beef and saute, breaking up the chunks as you go, until the meat is no longer pink, just 2-3 minutes. Stir in all remaining sauce ingredients, and cook, covered, about 30 minutes. Toss in the pasta and stir until heated through.

Variation: Pasta with Moroccan Lamb Sauce:
Substitute cilantro and mint (leaves only) for the basil, lean ground lamb for the beef, and ground cumin for the oregano. Proceed just as above.

Yield: Makes 6 to 8 servings.

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