This sauce is very meaty and creamy. It has quite a few ingredients and takes a good 2-3 hours to cook, but it is so worth it! It also makes alot, so I ended up freezing about half of it. I started with a recipe out of my favorite cookbook, "How To Cook Everything" by Mark Bittman, but I ended up making it my own by adding extra ingredients and by using a food processor for a smoother consistency with the veggies. Seved with a ceasar salad and crescent rolls, this meal is hearty and filling!
What You'll Need:
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 small onion, minced
1 carrot, peeled and minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 celery stalk, minced
3-4 slices bacon or pancetta, minced
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
1 cup mushroooms, chopped
1 lb. ground beef
1 (28 oz.) can whole plum tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
1 cup beef broth
1 bay leaf
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried basil
Salt and Freshly ground pepper
Handful of fresh Italian parsley, chopped
1 cup heavy cream
Freshly grated parmesean cheese
What You'll Do:
Put the olive oil in a large, deep saucepan. Turn the heat to med-lo and, a minute later, add the onion, garlic, celery, carrot, peppers, bacon, and mushrooms. Cook for about 10 minutes or until the veggies are tender.
At this point, I put all the veggies in a food processor to make them more smooth. Just a few pulses...it doesn't take much. You don't want them pureed.
Put the veggies back into the pot and add the meat. Cook until meat is no longer pink...about 5 minutes. Add the oregano, basil, and some salt and pepper.
Add the juice from the tomatoes and the bay leaf. Cook for about 5 minutes until most of the liquid is evaporated.
Crush the tomatoes with a fork or your hands and add them to the pot. Stir in the tomato paste. Add the beef broth and cook on low for about one hour. Stir occasionally, to break up the tomatoes and any clumps of meat.
After an hour of cooking, taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
Cook for another hour until much of the liquid is absorbed and the sauce is thick.
Add the cream and cook for about 15 more minutes, stirring occasionally and adding salt and perpper if needed. Add the chopped parsely at the end.
Top with grated parmesean cheese and capers.