Monday, June 14, 2010


Bay to Breakers is a yearly event in San Francisco that consists of a 7 mile trip from The Embarcadero, through Golden Gate Park, finishing at Ocean Beach. The boyfriend hosted everyone the night before so we could all wake up together (at 6am mind you), get ready and start the "race." A few girlfriends and I dressed up as Neon Ballerinas, while other members of our group just went for straight Neon. However, because everyone was staying the night before I decided to make dinner for everyone and decided I was going to attempt Spaghetti Bolognese. It turned out really well, it's not the classic version but it was pretty damn tasty. I made the sauce and let it simmer for a good 2 hours and the flavors developed really nicely.

Bolognese Sauce:

1/2 cup of pancetta
1 onion, finely chopped
2-3 large carrots, pealed, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 pork sausages (removed of their casings) or some sort of ground pork with seasonings
1/2 - 3/4 cup of white wine
1 dash vodka (optional)
2 cans of tomato sauce
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 1/4 cup of chicken or vegetable stock
2 bay leaves
2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1/2 tsp chili powder
pinch of red pepper flakes
salt and pepper (bout a tsp of each)
extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup heavy cream
Fresh basil and parsley chopped for garnish

Brown pancetta in a deep pot with a little bit of olive oil on medium heat till crispy.
Remove pancetta with a slotted spoon and start to sweat the onion, carrot and garlic in the rendered oil from the pancetta, you may have to add a little bit more oil at this point. Add the salt, pepper, oregano, fennel, chili powder and red pepper flakes. Let onions cook till translucent. Pull the vegetables out with a slotted spoon.
Brown the pork sausage and break up into small pieces with the back of your spoon. Once the pork is browned, add back the vegetables and pancetta and stir to combine. Pour in the wine and vodka to deglaze the pan and scrape the browned bits at the bottom of the pan. Add in the tomato paste, the tomato sauce, broth, and bay leaves.
Let the sauce simmer on low for at least an hour to let the flavors develop. After an hour taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary. Right before you're about to combine the sauce with the pasta, add the cream and turn off the heat.
Boil pasta (I used whole wheat spaghetti) in very salty water till al dente. In a frying pan, add the pasta sauce and when the pasta is ready combine the pasta in the pan with a 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water. Let pasta finish cooking in pasta sauce. Garnish with fresh herbs (basil, parsley and even mint will be delicious) and some Parmesan cheese. ENJOY!

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