Apparently, my body is craving fall foods right now - first butternut squash soup and now bolognese. I think I am ready to be done with this oppressive heat that is making my 6:30AM runs torture and draining my energy levels. What I am not ready for? All of the delicious summer fruits to be gone as evidence by the 10 lbs (!!!!) of peaches I got from my CSA yesterday.Yeah, that's what 10lbs of peaches looks like. I have plans to make jam if we can't finish them before they get too soft but for some reason I'm guessing that they will disappear quickly. (Check out those gorgeous flowers, also from our CSA)
After gathering all my peaches, I came home and all I wanted was pasta with bolognese sauce. Thankfully, Brad's recipe for bolognese is pretty damn tasty and much faster than traditional bolognese. Weeknight gluten-free pasta with bolognese? Don't mind if I do.
First, get your tomatoes ready. I highly recommend using fresh tomatoes instead of canned, but if you have canned, then you don't need to prep.
Cut out the stem area of the tomato using a small knife like this.
After the skin starts to pull away, put them in an ice bath to shock them. Set them aside. Chop your onion and try not to cry. (Anyone else think that farm fresh onions are 100x stronger than store-bought?) Chop your peeled carrot. Yes, carrot. It adds a sweetness and lovely crunch. Then mince your garlic.
Deglaze your onion/garlic/carrot mix with some wine. We used this vin del sol dessert wine from a local vineyard (Pearmond). It's butterscotch-y and strong. Yum! After you add your tomatoes, cook it down for about 30 minutes. Add some tomato paste to thicken. Try not to stare at it in anticipation. At this point you can also brown some local grass-feed beef and add it to your sauce. Or maybe some mushrooms for a vegetarian sauce.
Spoon over cooked gluten-free pasta, add some chiffonaded basil and dig in. (P.S. We are putting basil on everything right now because we have an abudnace and I have an obsession. Don't think you have seen the last of it!)
Weeknight Bolognese Yield: 2 entree servings
1 1/2-2 lbs. fresh tomatoes 1/2 medium onion, small diced 1 large carrot, peeled and finely chopped 1 Tbsp. tomato paste (more if you want a thicker sauce) a splash of wine (or stock) 1/2 lb. grass-fed or pasture raised beef, add more beef depending on your appetite (replace with mushrooms or omit for vegetarian/vegan option) 1 Tbsp. olive oil
salt + pepper to taste, as always
4 oz. gluten-free pasta, cooked according to package instructions basil for garnish
1. Boil a large pot of water. While that is heating up, prepare an ice bath with ice cubes and cold, cold water. Set aside. At this time you can also gently brown your meat (that sounds very odd) in a separate pan. Brown over medium high heat until just colored but not cooked all the way through. 2. De-stem and score your tomatoes. Place in the water once it is boiling and boil until the skins begin to peel back, about 90 seconds. Place directly in ice bath. Once cool enough to handle, remove skin and chop. Set aside. 3. Prep your other veggies. Dice your onion, mince your garlic, peel and chop your carrot. 4. Heat a pot with about 1Tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until transculent, about 7-10 minutes. 5. Add carrot and cook until just soft, about 5 minutes. 6. Carefully, add a healthy splash of wine or stock to the deglaze the pan. Be sure to scrap up any brown bits. 7. Add your tomatoes, tomato paste, and meat to the pan at this point. 8. Simmer sauce for about 30 minutes or until it reaches your desired thickness. 9. Pour over gluten-free pasta and garnish with fresh, fragrant basil.