Bolognese Sauce – The Classic Italian Recipe
Spaghetti Bolognese is probably one of the most popular pasta dishes in the world (not in Italy, I will explain it later). As such, it has lots of variations as everybody cooks it their way.
For a long time that was the case also for me. I used minced beef or pork, onions, garlic and tinned tomatoes. I cooked everything with an addition of stock for 30-60 minutes depending on how much time left I had to our meal. And I served the sauce with nothing else than spaghetti.
However, everything changed when an Italian lady taught me how to make Bolognese Sauce the Italian way. There are three the most important tips I learnt from her:
- you should use 3 times as many tomatoes as the amount of meat you are cooking your sauce with;
- 3 quarters of a litre of dry red wine is not too much when you have half a kg of meat; and
- cooking the ragu for at least 3 hours will ensure a rich, intense and beautiful flavour of the sauce.
There is also one more important thing about traditional Bolognese sauce. And it is a rule rather than a tip. You shouldn't serve it with spaghetti. Yes, the rest of the world treats the combination of words “spaghetti” and “Bolognese” as inseparable. But Italians consider serving spaghetti with this sauce as almost heresy and advise using tagliatelle instead. The sauce sticks to the thin ribbon-like form of pasta much better than to the spaghetti.
The Best Bolognese Sauce Recipe
I have used the below traditional Bolognese Sauce recipe for years now and don’t look for any improvements as it is already perfect. I even based my vegetarian version of the sauce on this very recipe.
P.S. Since it takes 3 hours to cook this best Bolognese Sauce, make loads of it and freeze some portions for later enjoyment.