Fall Harvest Bolognese w/ Torn Burrata

Fall vegetables are the perfect vehicle for crafting a seasonal bolognese.

Not only do they add a jolt of health + antioxidants + #blessed to every delicious mouthful, they’re SO easy to incorporate!

Let’s discuss.

The key to a killer bolognese is a combination of patience + quality. A good sauce takes about an hour to prep — several more if you’re getting serious — so you need to go into it with a bit of time. Start by combining crushed or peeled San Marzano tomatoes with seasonings + sugar, then mash and stir over a medium-low flame until the sauce begins to take shape. Simultaneously, brown extra-lean ground beef over a low flame until no pink parts remain, then combine with the prepped sauce. I like using extra-lean ground beef because it keeps thing trim, and obviously grass-fed meat is what I recommend you buy. With these foundational steps you can either serve this immediately over pasta, or start experimenting with your own creations!

This fall harvest bolognese being first.

To give this recipe a seasonal kick, begin by dicing up carrots, butternut squash, onion, and brussels sprouts. Saute the onion in olive oil until soft and translucent, then add the remaining vegetables to the pan. Continue to cook until everything is tender, then transfer the veggies to your pot of simmering sauce. Next, in the same skillet brown the extra-lean ground beef until cooked through, then combine all ingredients. The fusion of salty beef, earthy vegetables, and sweet tomato sauce is a trio of PERFECTION, your whole kitchen will smell like fall. More importantly, you’ll be staring into a sea of healthy, hearty, ruby-red sauce that’s guaranteed to make your knees weak.

To bolden things even further I added tomato paste + dry red wine (chianti!) to the sauce. Doing so made this thick, robust, and even more delicious, so don’t be shy when it comes to the wine (#lifemotto). At this point you can boil up some pasta and eat immediately, OR let your sauce simmer for another 2-3 hours. Obviously on a Monday this won’t be possible, but for the weekends, do it.

The longer a sauce cooks, the more divine it will be.

When you’re ready, ladle the sauce atop spaghetti — or any noodle of your choice! — sprinkle with parmesan, and serve with torn burrata. The burrata is a delightfully creamy, refreshing contrast next to the cozy/comforting sauce, so I absolutely insist you use it. And any leftover sauce (lol), can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for a week, or in the freezer for a month!

It’s flexible, flavorful, fall deliciousness. xo

Fall Harvest Bolognese w/ Torn Burrata

Ingredients:

  • SAUCE:
  • 28 oz can peeled or crushed tomatoes
  • 1 1/4 tsps basil
  • 1 1/4 tsps oregano
  • 1 tsp crushed or minced garlic
  • several dashes salt
  • a few pinches black pepper
  • a few pinches granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine (I used Chianti)
  • 3 oz tomato paste
  • FILLING + PASTA:
  • 1 1/2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, thinly sliced (should yield 1 cup)
  • 2 carrots, peeled & diced (should yield 1/2 cup)
  • 5 oz butternut squash, cut into precise 1/2″ cubes (should yield 1 cup)
  • 5 oz brussels sprouts, thinly diced (should yield 1 cup)
  • a few pinches of salt & pepper
  • 1/2 lb extra-lean ground beef (I used 96%/4%)
  • 10 oz spaghetti pasta
  • 8 oz burrata, torn
  • parmesan cheese to serve (optional)

Directions:

  1. Begin by preparing the sauce. In a large saucepan combine all sauce ingredients except the wine and the tomato paste over a medium-low flame, adjusting the seasonings as needed and mashing the tomatoes with a potato masher if using peeled tomatoes. Cover and simmer, occasionally stirring and mashing as appropriate.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet heat 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil over a medium flame. Swirl to coat the bottom, then add in the onions and sauté until soft and translucent, about 8 minutes. Next add the carrots, butternut squash, brussels sprouts, salt & pepper, and remaining olive oil to the pan, tossing to coat. Cover and allow all ingredients to simmer for 8 – 10 minutes until tender and just beginning to crisp.
  3. When ready, transfer the vegetables to the pot of sauce, combining well.
  4. In the same skillet as the vegetables, cook the ground beef over a medium flame until no pink parts remain, about 5-7 minutes. Once cooked, return the sauce + vegetables to the skillet. Add the wine and tomato paste and stir until combined, then adjust the seasonings as needed. Reduce flame to low and cover until needed.
  5. Lastly bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, then cook the spaghetti to al dente according to package instructions. Drain and return back to the same pot, then toss with about a cup of the sauce. Evenly distribute the pasta among bowls, generously ladle each with more sauce + halves of torn burrata, then eat! Sprinkle with parmesan cheese to serve if desired.
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