Spaghetti Bolognese

Kickstart your weekend with this easy-to-cook, ideal weekend dinner for kids and adults alike! A sizzling hot n’ slurrpy meal that appeals to vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike, quick to whip up and soo good to eat. I assure you this is one dish you will make on repeat, if you aren’t already doing so! Mmm..mouth watering home cooked fare!!

Vegetarians can cook this dish, tasting just as delightful, using kidney beans or rajma along with some roasted carrots and red peppers and loads of garlic n herbs.

An absolutely mega-classic dish, this is lightly charred rich brown lamb mince, slow cooked in a roasted garlicky, hot tomato sauce, tossed together with long golden strands of spaghetti, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, freshly grated parmesan cheese and fragrant herbs of your choice to make one helluva meal! All that’s left is the company of fabulous friends to enjoy it with.

Cooking Spaghetti somehow always manages to transport me to some Tuscan farm where I imagine myself growing farm fresh produce and cooking sauces with heavenly combinations of tomato, garlic, basil, nuts, fresh handpicked herbs, variety of homemade cheese and cold pressed olive oil. All to be eaten with fresh home-made pasta, soft delicious baked breads and wine! Alas, it was only me dreaming!

You see it is entirely the fault of my book on Italian Regional Cooking which does this to me! Italian cuisine according to me, is designed to enhance the natural flavors of its very best quality local fresh produce, plucked sun-ripened at just the right time-be it vegetables or fruit. It is preferred when home grown, without too many fertilizers, external flavour enhancers or imported ingredients. It is brightly coloured, wholesome & hearty and bursting with full-bodied flavours.

Bologna, the capital of the fertile Emilia-Romagna region lying to the north of Tuscany is known as Italy’s land of plenty. It is renowned for the best, freshly made & thinly rolled-out, fine textured Bolognese pasta, made from locally grown wheat. Tagliatelle served with a delicious ragu (stew), meat stuffed tortellini, baked lasagne and stuffed hats or cappelletti are other extremely popular fresh pasta dishes popular in Bologna. It is also home to Italy’s finest sausage known as Mortadella. Similarly, the world-famous Parma ham or prosciutto as well as Parmesan cheese also get their names from the city of Parma, located in the Emilia region of Italy.

Recipe for Spaghetti Bolognese

Ingredients (Serves 4-5 Persons)

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 500gms mutton mince
  • 500gms spaghetti
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 6-8 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely diced
  • 4 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 teaspoon ginger-garlic paste
  • 4 tomatoes, freshly blanched & pureed
  • 1 cup stock, meat or vegetable (optional)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1-2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried/fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons red chilli flakes or as per your taste
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire / soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • zest of 1 lemon, finely grated (without the inner white pith)
  • ½ teaspoons white pepper powder
  • 100 gms grated parmesan / mozzarella / cheddar cheese, plus extra to serve
  • fresh basil leaves to serve (optional)
  • Salt to taste


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Add 1 teaspoon of chopped garlic & thyme & stir for 1 minute. Add 1 teaspoon of chilli flakes & stir.
  2. Add the mutton mince and spread it out in the pan. Sprinkle ½ teaspoon salt and allow the mince to sear on medium to high heat for 3-4 minutes or until you get a good golden brown colour.
  3. Stir the mince up with your spatula and move to one side.
  4. Add 2 bay leaves & stir till they darken.
  5. Add the remaining chopped garlic, chopped onion, carrot and cook for a couple of minutes until soft.
  6. Add the ginger-garlic paste and saute to cook.
  7. Add the freshly pureed tomatoes as well as 4 tbsps of the readymade tomato puree & mix until well combined.
  8. Now pour in the stock or plain water. Add the herbs namely thyme, rosemary, Worcestershire sauce or soy sauce and sugar.
  9. Cover & cook on medium to low heat for about 4-5 minutes, adding a little water to get the consistency of your choice.
  10. Add in half of the grated cheese & lemon zest, cooking for another 3-4 minutes. Add in white pepper powder and check for salt. Your Bolognese sauce is ready.
  11. Cook the spaghetti in plenty of boiling salted water until al dente.
  12. To serve, drain the spaghetti (reserving ½ cup of pasta cooking water).
  13. Add the pasta cooking water, remaining cheese and stir in the spaghetti into the sauce over medium heat for a few minutes until thick and glossy.
  14. Serve into bowls, drizzling more olive oil and cheese on top. Garnish with fresh basil leaves.


  • Vegetarians can cook the same tomato sauce, replacing mince with 1 cup soaked and boiled kidney beans, 2 chopped & roasted carrots and 1 red pepper.

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