Friday, February 1, 2013

pasta bolagna

 Pasta Bolognese, or pasta bolagna as some people I know call it, is one of my favourite sauces.   It's perfect for after a long stressful week.  I kick everyone out of the kitchen, blast some music and make my favourite dinner.  There is usually enough sauce left over for later, and it only improves in taste the next day.

I use the recipe from Jamie Oliver's book Jamie's Food Revolution , with a few small changes (of course).  I'm not going to write out exactly what I do for this recipe because I think that everyone should go out and acquire a copy of this book.  It's my favourite recommendation to those new in the kitchen.  Just about every recipe uses things that (should be) are already in a standard kitchen.  There's no running around town searching for that specific olive that you will never use again.  In stead, this book is good, wholesome, everyday, easy to do, cooking.

Hurry up, I'm hungry.

well, if I'm putting wine in the sauce, why not poor a glass for the cook?

mess in place, or whatever the 'real' cooks call it

Today I used 1/2 pound of ground goat, and 1/2 pound of ground pork.  Omitted the celery, added extra garlic, used 1 large sweet onion instead of two regular ones, used goat cheese instead of parmesan, replaced the water with red wine, and changed the spices.

I don't have any dry oregano on hand, or any fresh basil.  So instead, I used fresh thyme.  This was amazing!  I kept taking photos trying to capture how great this was when frying up, but then I realized, it wasn't the image I was trying to capture but the smell.  Finely chopped fresh time with onions and bacon sizzling in a pan filling the house with the overwhelming feeling that a master chef had come to call.  I wish I could capture it and share it with you.

can you smell the bacon?
Such a small amount but makes all the difference
Veg and herbs waiting patiently to one side for their turn

This is what I'm talking about with the smell of the thyme.

steamy kitchen love

But other than those minor changes, I think I followed the recipe pretty close for a change.

Usually I would like to make fresh pasta with this sauce, but there wasn't enough room in the kitchen, so I did the next best thing:

Affordable cooking: oh, that depends on how much you pay for the meat.  Personally I have an extreme distrust of ground meat, so I spend extra money and only get it from somewhere I trust.  About $1 to $1.50 for veg and herbs, $3 for the tomatoes, let's say another $4 for meat = about $8.  This will server at least 6 generous servings, and this particular pasta costs about 50 cent for a serving.  That's about $1.80 to $2 per serving.  Which considering how incredibly yummy this is, isn't half bad.

Allergy friendly:  there are some potential problems with the dairy and some people have sensitivity to garlic, &c.  But so long as you can include the onions, tomatoes, and meat, the recipe is actually easy to adjust for allergies.

This is neither vegan or vegetarian friendly.  I've seen quite a few vegan versions of this sauce, but quite frankly, the meat substitute tends to distract from the overall taste.  If I wanted to cook a rich tomato sauce for a vegan or vegetarian, I would grab a good cookbook and start again from scratch instead of trying to imitate meat.  There are so many good vegan friendly pasta sauce recipes out there.  But that's just my


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