I know, this is pretty controversial. Claiming to have the best recipe for spaghetti Bolognese is like claiming to have the best apple pie or roast potato recipe. The automatic response is "What? No, my mother makes the best spag bol (As it's known here in the UK)!" I mean, besides chicken tikka masala and fish and chips, spag bol is practically our national dish, served regularly at pretty much every dining table the country over.
This recipe makes three batches, so that you can freeze enough for a couple of other dinners for subsequent weeks without any more work. It takes a long, slow cook and has some ingredients that might surprise you, but the final result is rich, authentic and multi-layered. You will never ever touch another jar of pre-made sauce again, especially as this comes in at a few pennies over £1 per person!
Also ridiculously good in lasagne.
The BEST Bolognese Pasta Sauce
Serves 4 x 3 batches, takes 3 1/2 hours
450g/1lb beef mince
450g/1lb free range pork mince*
450g/1lb British rose veal mince**
2-400 tins crushed tomatoes
140 tin tomato puree
3 large onions, thinly sliced
1 large carrot, finely diced
2 stalks celery, diced
3 bay leaves
Lg bunch basil, finely chopped
8 large garlic cloves,
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2-tomato tins full of milk
1 tbsp sea salt (or to taste)
4 tbsp olive oil
To serve- big hunk of parmesan or peccorino romano
Heat half of the olive oil over a high heat in a large, deep frying pan or dutch oven. Fry the beef, then the veal, then the pork in batches, moving each to a bowl off the heat once browned well.
Put the remaining oil in the pan and add the sliced onions, frying gently until soft and starting to go gold before stirring through the celery and carrot.
Add all the remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer, then lower the heat to low and cover tightly with a lid.
Cook for 3 hours, stirring every so often and checking liquid levels. Serve over your favourite pasta with freshly grated parm and a leafy garden salad.
* Use free range pork if you can. Aside from the obvious ethical reasons, the difference in flavour in outdoor reared pork is huuuuge.
**If you live outside the UK or can't find free range veal, substitute with either more pork, more beef or even minced lamb, which is a brilliant alternative.