Thursday, August 11, 2011

Bolognese with Cousins.... serves 4 with leftovers

I've been talking about my cooking camp and the recipes that came with it.  I'm going to take a "side-step" and talk about my trip to California this past week.  I don't get here often, and when I do, I stay with my cousin Kelley, her husband Joe and their 4 girls, Aly, Andie, Georgia and Jackie.  I can't even begin to tell you how much fun we have together.  Not only does the weather put a nice bow on the top, but it's a week of severe fun and laughter.  Kelley has been that "big sister" I never had.  Ever since we spent summers together as kids in Colorado, taking cruises with our beloved Nana, have I grown to look up to her.  She makes me laugh, accepts me for who I am and is always there to listen to my deepest desires and secrets.  I can't imagine my life or summers, for that matter, without her.  I've visited sunny California since college and I can't stop going.  So, with this trip, and as we've aged with our own kids, it's a homecoming of sorts.  Yes, I did cook all but 2 meals during our 7 day stay, but to be honest, it has brought us even closer.  Her kids are blossoming into beautiful young girls and watching them interact with mine makes me reflect to those summers as tots to teenagers.  And, come to find out, they love kale and roasted vegetables.  Kelley is the the final touch in my life of recipes.  Without her, my life would be just bland.  Thanks for a wonderful week.... I truly love you with everything I am. (Despite Andie wearing her "Giants World Series Champions t-shirt as I serve her dinner.)


Olive oil
3/4 cup carrots, finely diced
3/4 cup celery, finely diced
3/4 cup onion, finely diced
1 clove garlic, minced
4oz pancetta, diced
1 oz dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in 1 cup water, diced (reserve water)
1 pd ground chuck
1 pd ground veal
1 pd ground pork
28 oz whole or diced tomatoes, with juice
1/2 cup white zifandel
1/2 cup reserved mushroom water
6oz tomato paste


Add olive oil (enough to cover pan) to large soup pot over medium heat.  Add vegetables and saute until almost burnt, about 15-20 minutes.  Stir occasionally.  Add pancetta and saute an additional 5 minutes.  Add veal, beef and pork and with wooden spoon, break up meat until almost "minced".  Cook until browned, continuing to break up.  Add porcini, stirring to incorporate.  Add 1/2 cup reserved mushroom water, 1/2 wine and tomatoes.  Again, break up to a "mince".  Bring to a soft boil and reduce, about 10-15  minutes.  Add tomato paste and stir to incorporate.  Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until sauce thickens.  Add to your favorite pasta.

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