Penne Bolognese

one pound smooth penne
three fourths pound of ground pork/veal/beef mix
half cup diced pancetta
half cup diced onion
half cup diced carrot
half cup diced celery
eight large garlic cloves, diced
olive oil
fresh-ground black pepper
fresh-grated nutmeg
one cup dry white wine
three fourths cup veal or beef stock
two thirds cup whole milk
one large can crushed san marzanos
two tablespoons butter
handful chopped basil plus more for garnish
quarter cup grated parmigiano reggiano plus more for garnish

Render down the pancetta on low heat in a little bit of olive oil until you have melted fown almost all of the fat.

Sautee the carrots in the pancetta until they start to soften, with generous black pepper and nutmeg.

Add the celery and continue to sautee for a few minutes.

Add the onions and continue to sautee for a few minutes.

Add the garlic and sautee until all the veggies are nice and soft.

Add the meat and sautee until it is fully cooked and just starting to brown a bit.

Turn up the heat to medium high and deglaze with the wine, reducing until all the alcohol is gone.

Add the stock and continue to reduce until most of the liquid is gone.

Add the milk and reduce until almost all the liquid is gone.

Add the tomatoes and one bay leaf, bring to a boil, and then turn down to low and simmer with the lid on, stirring every fifteen minutes or so.

Sauce is pretty much done, and we were hungry. Longer is always better for a bolognese, however.

Add about one half cup of pasta water after boiling the pasta to very molto al dente in salty water and the drained pasta, and finish for about a minute or so with stirring. Turn off the heat and add the grated cheese, basil, and butter, and stir to incorporate fully.

Plate, sprinkle, grate, and eat!


  1. Uncle Glenny says

    CP, could you describe this pot you’re using? It looks to be more (flat-bottomed) wok than dutch oven. Enamaled cast iron I presume.

  2. Uncle Glenny says

    Meant to add (as an act of general venting), I’m making some stuff with chocolate (chopped myself from big block) and found my fucken scale is broken.

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