Mar 24, 2011

Weeknight Bolognese

weeknight bolognese 1

I love a recipe that specifically calls out being easy for a weeknight.  And I love a good Bolognese sauce – and my favorite still is this summer vegetable bolognese (although its really not ‘true’ bolognese).  True Bolognese would be simmering for hours on the stove – and who really has time during the week for that.  Actually who has time on the weekend for that either? 

My favorite part of this recipe is that it calls for red wine – and when a recipe calls for red wine, it means you get to enjoy the rest of the bottle during dinner – on a weeknight too!  I hope you are convinced to try this!


  • 1 lb. ground beef (or turkey or chicken)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/4 cups dry red wine, divided
  • 1 (28-oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 3/4 lb. dried pasta
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves, lightly packed
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving


1. Add the beef to a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook, crumbling the meat with a wooden spoon, 5-7 minutes, until the meat has started to brown and is no longer pink. 

2. Stir in the garlic, red pepper flakes, oregano, and tomato paste and cook for 1 more minute, or until fragrant.

3. Pour 1 cup of the wine into the skillet and stir to scrape up any browned bits. 

4. Add the tomatoes, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1 teaspoon of pepper, stirring until combined.  Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer 10-15 minutes.

5. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil.  Add the pasta and cook until al dente according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.

6. As the pasta cooks, finish the sauce.  Add the nutmeg, basil, cream, and remaining 1/4 cup wine.  Simmer for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until thickened. 

7. Add the sauce to the pasta, along with the Parmesan cheese, and toss well.  Serve hot and pass additional Parmesan at the table.

Source: Ina Garten, How Easy is That? as seen on Pink Parsley

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  1. This was really good. Plus when Christine has wine on a weeknight she falls asleep early.

  2. Yummy!This pasta made me hungry!!xx

  3. I can never refuse pasta with Bolognese sauce...Yum!