Spaghetti Bolognaise Recipe

Spaghetti Bolognaise originated in the Italian town, Bologna. It is generally a ragu sauce, served with minced beef, mushrooms, and spaghetti. The Italians eat their spaghetti far differently to most British people. They use their spaghetti sauces to coat the pasta and bring out the flavour, whereas us Brits tend to serve spaghetti with the sauce, and concentrate more on the sauce.

You can add more or less herbs or vegetables into this as you like, tweak it until it becomes a family favourite. Serve with parmesan shavings, fresh spaghetti and garlic bread.

For this traditional bolognaise recipe, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 500g minced lean steak – using steak instead of normal beef makes the dish less greasy
  • 2 tins chopped tomatoes
  • 250g mushrooms
  • 2 white onions
  • Couple of carrots
  • Couple of celery sticks
  • Chopped parsley, oregano, and basil
  • 3 – 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 glass of red wine
  • 1 glass beef stock
  • Salt and Pepper

Method of Preparation

Chop up the onion, carrots, and celery, until they are roughly the same size. This can also be done by giving them a quick blitz in a food processor. Mince the garlic or chop as finely as you can, and start to cook all these in a frying pan with a little bit of olive oil and butter. Cook for about ten minutes, or until golden brown and translucent. Don’t burn them!

Take your vegetables off the heat and pop them into a large saucepan. Set this aside.

Brown your minced steak in the frying pan for 4 – 5 minutes until there is no pinkness left. Drain the excess fat and add this to your vegetables.

Add the two tins of tomatoes, beef stock, and red wine, and stir together. Put back onto the heat and simmer. Add some seasoning.

Chop up your herbs. There’s no need to do this too finely as they lose their flavour. Add these into the mixture.

Chop your mushrooms into quarters and fry them in some butter and parsley until brown. The reason we leave the mushrooms until now is to make sure they are lovely and crispy, and they won’t lose their shape or flavour as much.

Add the mushrooms to the pan and simmer for a good long time, 2-3 hours, longer if you can. You can use a slow cooker if you have one. Adding a splash of balsamic vinegar will give it extra depth, BE CAREFUL though, as too much will make the dish tart and overdo it. Check the seasoning, if it needs more, add some more.


For an extra special bolognaise, marinade the minced steak overnight in red wine, parsley, basil, and oregano, in the fridge. You will still use the wine later on in the recipe, this just gives it even more depth of flavour.

Once cooked, put your pasta on to boil. Always add pasta to boiling water, don’t add it to cold and wait for it to boil, as it becomes a bit water logged and soggy. Fresh pasta is much quicker to cook than dried and will take 2-3 minutes where dried takes 8-10 minutes.

Make sure you salt the pasta water to give it some more flavour.

Serve! Add garlic bread and a nice red wine.

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