Tagliatelle with Bolognese Sauce

Refined, elegant Bolognese is the famous sauce from the Bologna region of Italy. It is rich, meaty and not tomato-based. It is the sauce to use in lasagna or with tagliatelle, which is an egg-based pasta.

Serves 4

½ cup dried porcini mushrooms
1 cup boiling water
One 796 mL can tomatoes
¼ cup olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
½ cup finely chopped carrots
½ cup finely chopped celery
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 tbsp chopped parsley
12 oz (375 g) ground beef
12 oz (375 g) ground pork
Salt and freshly ground pepper
½ cup red wine
1 cup beef stock
1 tbsp tomato paste
¼ cup whipping cream
Pinch nutmeg
1 lb (500 g) tagliatelle
½ cup grated parmigiano Reggiano

Soak mushrooms in boiling water for 20 minutes. Strain and reserve mushrooms and liquid separately. Finely chop porcini mushrooms and reserve. Strain tomatoes and reserve juice for another use. Chop tomatoes and reserve.

Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add onions, carrots and celery and cook gently for 10 minutes or until vegetables are very soft and beginning to brown. Stir in garlic and parsley and cook for 3 minutes more.

Add beef and pork and sauté until meat looses its pinkness, about 5 minutes. Add reserved mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Add wine and boil until wine is mostly evaporated and mixture is saucy. Stir in stock, mushroom soaking water, tomato paste and tomatoes.

Bring to boil, reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for 1 hour. Re-season and add whipping cream and nutmeg. Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes longer or until flavours are combined.

While sauce is cooking add tagliatelle to a large pot of boiling salted water and boil for 5 minutes or until tagliatelle is al dente. Drain well.

Toss tagliatelle with sauce. Sprinkle with Parmesan.