3 Minutes Shrimp Pasta Sauce with Garlic and Lemon Zest, Italian Style – Healthy, Easy and Quick – Deliciously amazing!

Shrimp Pasta Sauce Italian style

Delicious Shrimp Pasta Sauce: when you’re looking for an authentic Italian pasta sauce recipe, you know that you’re looking for simplicity, using just few ingredients along with some basic cooking techniques to simply enhance the natural flavour of the food and still having amazing and utterly delicious.


easy, quick, shrimp, pasta, sauce, prawn, sauce, italian

This pasta sauce may seem not so special from the pictures but I ensure you this dish is so so so tasty that you could compete with a proper Italian restaurant near the Amalfi coast!
So trust me when I’m saying that this is amazingly delicious, because it is and it’s also ridiculously quick to make, less than the pasta cooking time – just 3 minutes!
easy, quick, shrimp, pasta, sauce, italian, lemon, garlic
For this recipe I suggest you to use Spelt Spaghetti because their nutty taste goes perfectly with this shrimp sauce, giving you the sensation of eating in a fine restaurant.
  organic, spelt, spaghetti, farro, luzi, bellavita
Spelt is an ancient grain and is really healthy, it’s low in calories than the classic wheat, easier to digest because the extra fiber contained in it aids in the digestion of the gluten. This particularly rich grain is high in protein and satisfies the stomach, so you only need a little to fill you up, perfect for your diet – healthy and satisfying!

Always remember to buy quality ingredients to have the most satisfying experience, especially when you’re cooking Italian. 


You can find authentic Italian Spelt pasta along with other authentic Italian specialities in this fabulous online shop “Bellavita Shop“* who is based in London, UK. I really suggest you to see all the authentic and marvellous food and drinks they sell: Artisan Italian food of unique quality at your fingertips, at last!

bellavita, box, italian, food, online, quality, authentic
*Spelt Spaghetti were complimentary, but as always, my opinions are my own.

EXCLUSIVE to 50 Ilaria’s Perfect Recipes readers: Register here for your FREE ticket to attend the Bellavita EXPO, London, from the 17th to the 19th of July 2016, using the code: BELLAVITAMAG

King Prawn Pasta Sauce with Garlic and Lemon Zest Italian Style

Difficulty: super easy
Preparation: 0 minutes Cooking Time: 3 minutes
Yield: 2 servings

INGREDIENTS:

  • 160 grams / 2/5 pounds Spelt pasta
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled (slightly squashed with your hands)
  • 200 grams / 1/2 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined if necessary / King prawns (reserve 6 with tail for decoration)
  • 30 ml / 1/8 cup dry white wine
  • finely grated zest of 2 lemons (only the yellow part)
  • 2 tbsp Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
    Optional:
  • shrimp shells
  • 2 tbsp butter
    To serve:
  • 1 small bunch parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • some curly thin strips of lemon zest

INSTRUCTIONS:

Cook pasta al dente.
While the pasta is cooking, make the shrimp pasta sauce as follows (it takes just 3 minutes).
(Optional) If you want to add more flavour to this dish, cook the shrimp shells (and heads) in butter for 3 minutes in a small saucepan. Discard the shells, drain the flavoured butter and add it to the following pan.
Put a large pan over medium-high heat. Add e.v. olive oil (optional: add also the flavoured shrimp butter), garlic cloves and shrimps and stir until the shrimps are halfway cooked (1 minute).
king, prawn, garlic, italian, shrimp, pasta, sauce
Sprinkle with white wine and let the alcohol evaporate.
shrimp, pasta, sauce, italian, wine, lemon
Remove from heat, discard the garlic cloves, add the finely grated lemon zest, stir a bit, add Parmigiano cheese and mix very well.
Leave apart the 6 shrimps with tail for decoration.

Add cooked pasta to the pan, give a stir and serve immediately.

spelt, shrimp, spaghetti, recipe Decorate every pasta dish by sprinkling over some chopped parsley, some curly strips of lemon zest and put the cooked shrimps with tail in the middle or as you prefer.
easy, quick, shrimp, pasta, sauce, prawn, italian, garlic, lemon
Now enjoy this super healthy, quick and delicious seafood pasta with all the flavours of Italy.
3 Minutes Shrimp Pasta Sauce with Garlic and Lemon Zest, Italian Style - Healthy, Easy and Quick - Deliciously amazing!
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A simple Shrimp Pasta Sauce, Italian style, super easy and super delicious!
Author:
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 160 grams / 2/5 pounds Spelt pasta
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled (slightly squashed with your hands)
  • 200 grams / ½ pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined if necessary / King prawns (reserve 6 with tail for decoration)
  • 30 ml / ⅛ cup dry white wine
  • finely grated zest of 2 lemons (only the yellow part)
  • 2 tbsp Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
Optional:
  • shrimp shells
  • 2 tbsp butter
To serve:
  • 1 small bunch parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • some curly thin strips of lemon zest
Instructions
  1. Cook pasta al dente.
(Optional) If you want to add more flavour to this dish, cook the shrimp shells (and heads) in butter for 3 minutes in a small saucepan. Discard the shells, drain the flavoured butter and add it to the following pan.
  1. Put a large pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add e.v. olive oil (optional: add also the flavoured shrimp butter), garlic cloves and shrimps and stir until the shrimps are halfway cooked (1 minute).
  3. Sprinkle with white wine and let the alcohol evaporate.
  4. Remove from heat, discard the garlic cloves, add the finely grated lemon zest, stir a bit, add Parmigiano cheese and mix very well.
  5. Leave apart the 6 shrimps with tail for decoration.
  6. Add cooked pasta to the pan, give a stir and serve immediately.
  7. Decorate every pasta dish by sprinkling over some chopped parsley, some curly strips of lemon zest and put the cooked shrimps with tail in the middle or as you prefer.

Ultimate Best Authentic Bolognese Sauce – the Great Italian Sauce!

AUTHENTIC BOLOGNESE SAUCE

You know that I’m always searching for best/perfect recipes, don’t you? Well, I’ve already told you in my Best Authentic Bolognese Sauce post what my favourite sauce for pasta was and I thought that my Mom’s Ragù was the best recipe ever, but recently I tried another one, just out of curiosity and to confirm my theory, and I was literally amazed!


ultimate best authentic bolognese sauce

This recipe is so perfect, rich and so delicious that I’m asking how couldn’t I ever imagined that? I tried many other recipes but no one satisfied me more than my mom’s recipe even if those were made by great grandmothers.

Now, look at the photo below… do I need to add more words to convince you???

authentic best tagliatelle bolognese sauce

Another reason why I was skeptical before trying this recipe is because it does not contain garlic. And I love garlic in Bolognese Sauce, it gives a wonderful taste. But this recipe is so tasty itself and is balanced in every part of it. So, garlic lovers, before adding some garlic, taste the sauce with pasta (not alone).

This Great Authentic Bolognese Sauce is heavier (more fats) than other recipes I shared with you, but worth everything, even your bikini, trust me. Next time you’ll make Tagliatelle you’ll want to try this one, really!

This is very simple to make too, just few easy steps and some time at home, but you don’t have to look constantly at the stove so you can do other things while it cooks.

best authentic bolognese sauce delicious

I use this recipe just for special occasions, such as when I have guests or on special Sundays, while for “daily” lunchtime I always use my Mom’s recipe because it’s “healthier” (if a Bolognese sauce can be called that ahah!) and has less fats so I can continue in following my diet. That’s why I don’t remove this recipe from the blog, because is still valuable.

best italian tagliatelle bolognese sauce

As I told you before in the other post, the secret for a special Bolognese Sauce, that we (italians) call Ragù (pron. Ruh-goo), is the long cooking time, 6 hours are best.

Yes, it can be ready after 2 hours but it will be just a sauce with some meat in it and very very bland.

People say that the habit of cooking meat for long hours is given by the fact that many years ago it was very tough, so long cooking times ensured a better tenderness to the meat, but I do not agree with that because when a Bolognese Sauce is cooked for at least 4 hours (or as I suggest 6), the meat along with olive oil, vegetables and tomato perfectly combine together to form a unique mouth-watering sauce, so there’s really a huge difference in the taste, not just in tenderness (the pictures below show the difference).

best bolognese sauce before

After 2 hours of cooking the sauce is watery, bland and the meat is whitish.

best bolognese sauce long hours

After 6 hours of cooking the sauce is dense and full of taste!

So this is the best Bolognese Sauce recipe I have ever ever ever eaten, period. If you know another recipe that is better than this one (I’m a bit skeptical but..), please let me know!!! It would be another huge discovery!

Enough said, now let’s move to the recipe!

italian grandma tagliatelle bolognese sauce

Ultimate Best Authentic Bolognese Sauce *

* (adapted from Beniamino Baleotti’s Ragù alla Bolognese recipe, he works as a cook at Agriturismo Le Ginestre in Pianoro (Bologna). If you ever plan to go near there make sure to visit him and have a traditional lunch there or make a pasta course, he speaks Japaneese too! I made some adjustments to his recipe such as swapped out lard for butter, because for me the first one gives a too piggy taste.)

Difficulty: easy
Preparation: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 4-6 hours
Yield: 6-7 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4-5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 500 gr / 1lb / 18 oz ground quality beef (94% lean if possible)
  • 300 gr / 2/3 lb / 10 oz ground quality lean pork meat (chuck/shoulder or loin)
  • 200 gr / 1/2 lb / 7 oz ground pork belly (skinned, raw/no seasoned)
  • 450 gr / 16 oz / 4 1/2 cups soffritto vegetables OR 2 medium onions, 3 carrots and 2 celery stalks finely chopped
  • 150 ml  / 2/3 cup red wine (no bubbles)
  • 600 gr / 1 1/4 lbs / 20 oz plain tomato sauce
  • 2 sage leaf
  • 1 bay leaf
  • a pinch of freshly ground nutmeg
  • kosher salt to taste

Instructions:

Heat oil and butter in a heavy, bottomed pot and fry ground pork belly until it’s brown and crispy (about 8-10 minutes).

Don’t skip this passage, it’s the key for a tasty sauce!!!

butter olive oil bolognese sauce

pancetta pork belly bolognese sauce

crispy pork belly bolognese sauce

crispy pancetta bolognese sauce closeup

Crispy pork belly

Add vegetables and fry them for about 10 minutes until they start to soften and color a bit (so vegetables are more savoury and sweet), scraping the bottom of the pan occasionally.

soffritto bolognese sauce

Mine were frozen

soffritto pork belly bolognese sauce

Add the remaining ground meat, breaking it up with a fork and cook until it’s browned all over (5-10 minutes) and all the water, that the meat releases, is evaporated.

soffritto pork belly meat bolognese sauce

seared meat bolognese sauce

Add red wine, give a stir and let the liquid reduce for 2-3 minutes or until you no longer smell alcohol.

red wine best bolognese sauce

Add tomato sauce, sage, bay leaf, nutmeg, salt and cover the meat with some water.

tomato authentic bolognese sauce

Partially cover with a lid and simmer Ragù for at least 4 hours (6 is better), stirring occasionally (about every 1 1/2 hours). During that time, if you see that the sauce is drying to much add some water (not at the end of the cooking time though!).

Here’s a photo of the sauce after just 2 hours of cooking (watery and bland).

best bolognese sauce before closeup

That’s how the sauce has to look like after 6 hours of cooking:

best bolognese sauce after closeup

As you have read, there’re just few steps to follow. It’s not complicated at all, so on the next rainy Sunday have a try and let me know if it’s your best italian Bolognese Sauce recipe too! And don’t forget that Ragú can be used with every kind of pasta, not just Tagliatelle!

italian ragu bolognese sauce perfect tagliatelle

ultimate great authentic italian pasta sauce mouth watering tagliatelle bolognese sauce

Ultimate Best Authentic Bolognese Sauce - the Great Italian Sauce!
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
The most delicious and authentic Bolognese sauce ever.
Author:
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4-5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 500 gr / 1lb / 18 oz ground quality beef (94% lean if possible)
  • 300 gr / ⅔ lb / 10 oz ground quality lean pork meat (chuck/shoulder or loin)
  • 200 gr / ½ lb / 7 oz ground pork belly (skinned, raw/no seasoned)
  • 450 gr / 16 oz / 4½ cups soffritto vegetables OR 2 medium onions, 3 carrots and 2 celery stalks finely chopped
  • 150 ml / ⅔ cup red wine (no bubbles)
  • 600 gr / 1¼ lbs / 20 oz plain tomato sauce
  • 2 sage leaf
  • 1 bay leaf
  • a pinch of freshly ground nutmeg
  • kosher salt to taste
Instructions
  1. Heat oil and butter in a heavy, bottomed pot and fry ground pork belly until it's brown and crispy (about 8-10 minutes).
  2. Add vegetables and fry them for about 10 minutes until they start to soften and color a bit (so vegetables are more savoury and sweet), scraping the bottom of the pan occasionally.
  3. Add the remaining ground meat, breaking it up with a fork and cook until it's browned all over (5-10 minutes) and all the water, that the meat releases, is evaporated.
  4. Add red wine, give a stir and let the liquid reduce for 2-3 minutes or until you no longer smell alcohol.
  5. Add tomato sauce, sage, bay leaf, nutmeg, salt and cover the meat with some water.
  6. Partially cover with a lid and simmer Ragù for at least 4 hours (6 is better), stirring occasionally (about every 1½ hours). During that time, if you see that the sauce is drying to much add some water (not at the end of the cooking time though!).

Asparagus with onion and white wine

Here May is the season for asparagus so why not talking to you about a simple but delicious versatile recipe!
In fact, this recipe can be used as a vegetable side dish or as a sauce for pasta or as a filling along with ricotta for Tortelloni or Ravioli.


asparagus onion white wine italian best

Asparagus are really healthy vegetables and have detoxifying and diuretic effects. They are low in calories, loaded with vitamins and minerals, a good source of folic acid, vitamin A, B vitamins and vitamin C and are also a fair source of calcium and fiber.

So a lot of reasons to eat them!
bunch asparagus

The following ingredients are what I used for a bunch of thin asparagus but this is a recipe so simple that you can adapt it easily to your liking and to the amount of asparagus you have.

Asparagus with onion and white wine

Difficulty: easy
Preparation: 5 minutes Cooking Time: 8-20 minutes
Yield: ≈4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of asparagus (about 40 thin)
  • 3/4 medium onion
  • 1/4 cup butter and 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2/4 cup – 120 ml white wine (no bubbles)
  • ≈ 2/4 cup – 120 ml water
  • Salt and/or pepper to taste

Instructions:

Clean asparagus very well under cool running water to remove dirt and sand (the following first photos refer to larger asparagus).

asparagus colander

Remove the woody root ends of asparagus. If you don’t know how much you have to cut, a good trick is to just take the end of the asparagus between your thumb and forefinger and bend it until it breaks (you can save the woody roots to make an asparagus soup).

cut asparagus spear

Sometimes asparagus can develop a tough outer skin (especially the larger ones) so I like to peel it away too with a knife or a vegetable peeler.

peel asparagus outer skin

Here I leave the spears whole but you can cut them into smaller pieces if you like.

Halve the onion and cut it in really thin slices.

cut onion half onion cut slices

On a medium-high heat, put the butter or olive oil into a pan.
Add the sliced onion and let sauté for a minute.

onion sliced pan butter oil

Add the asparagus, salt and pepper to taste and mix a bit (here I used a small pan so it was a bit overcrowded, use a larger one if you can).

asparagus pan with onion

Add white wine and let it evaporate.

asparagus pan onion wine

Then add a bit of water and let them cook on a medium heat (adjust with some more water if the asparagus stick to the bottom of the pan).

The cooking time depends on the size and the thickness of the asparagus and of course to your taste! So you can check them by piercing the spears with a fork or a toothpick. They should be tender but still a bit firm (mine were thinner so they took about 10 minutes to be fully cooked).

asparagus pan cooked

Keep in mind that if asparagus are undercooked they’re not easy to chew while if they’re overcooked they become flabby.

So the best test would be to take a bite into one! 😉

The next picture shows large asparagus that I like the most because they are juicer, tender and less fibrous (once you peel away the outer skin, of course).

large asparagus dish onion

As I told you before you can cut them into little pieces, saving some tops for the garnish, and toss as a sauce over your favourite pasta.

If you use them as a Ravioli or Tortelloni filling, you need to cut them in very little pieces (along with the onion), put them in a colander to drain any liquid in excess (or pat with a towel) then in a bowl and add to almost equal part of drained ricotta and some grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
If the mixture is too wet, add some finely grated bread crumbs (not too much though!).

triangle_ravioli

So this is my favourite (healthy) way to eat asparagus instead of just boiling them, what’s yours?

asparagus dish

Asparagus with onion and white wine
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Delicious, easy and healthy Asparagus Italian style
Author:
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 bunch of asparagus (about 40 thin)
  • ¾ medium onion
  • ¼ cup butter and 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2/4 cup - 120 ml white wine (no bubbles)
  • ≈ 2/4 cup - 120 ml water
  • Salt and/or pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Clean asparagus very well under cool running water to remove dirt and sand (the following first photos refer to larger asparagus).
  2. Remove the woody root ends of asparagus. If you don't know how much you have to cut, a good trick is to just take the end of the asparagus between your thumb and forefinger and bend it until it breaks (you can save the woody roots to make an asparagus soup).
  3. Peel away outer skin with a knife or a vegetable peeler if desired.
  4. Halve the onion and cut it in really thin slices.
  5. On a medium-high heat, put the butter or olive oil into a pan.
  6. Add the sliced onion and let sauté for a minute.
  7. Add the asparagus, salt and pepper to taste and mix a bit.
  8. Add white wine and let it evaporate.
  9. Then add a bit of water and let them cook on a medium heat (adjust with some more water if the asparagus stick to the bottom of the pan).
  10. Check them if they're done by piercing the spears with a fork or a toothpick. They should be tender but still a bit firm.

 

Béchamel Sauce (Besciamella) and my foolproof lump-free process

Béchamel Sauce or Besciamella in italian (beh-shuh-mel-luh), is one of the mother sauces of the french and italian cuisine but it’s also known as white sauce.
For someone it may be a little tricky because sometimes it turns out a bit lumpy, but trust me and follow my quick recipe and tips for a perfect foolproof lump-free sauce, Besciamella is a really simple and versatile sauce!


bechamel sauce besciamella best lump free

History tells that an earlier version of Besciamella was born in Tuscany named as “Salsa Colla” (Glue Sauce), consisted in slow cooked milk with meat broth, spices and cream, then it was imported in France (together to several other recipes like onion soup) by Catherine de’ Medici, the wife of King Henry II of France, and then was modified by a chef in honour of the “marquis de Béchamel”, who held the honorary post of chief steward to Louis XIV.

Nowadays, in Italy, Besciamella is most used in the Emilian cuisine especially in the Lasagne recipe, Cannelloni, Pasta al Forno (baked pasta) and 4 cheeses pasta.

But it’s also used with vegetables such as baked cauliflowers or broccoli (for that recipe I like to use a more flavorful sauce: bechamel plus egg yolks, cream and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese – called by chefs Mornay sauce – recipe in a next post).

Béchamel is made by melting butter with equal parts of flour in order to make a roux, which is cooked under low heat while stirring with a whisk and, because it’s a white sauce, you have to pay attention to not over brown the roux (a dark brown roux is usually used to thick roasted meats or stews so they will have more flavour, albeit less thickening power).

The roux is then mixed with nutmeg, heated milk, and it’s customary in Italy, especially in Emilia-Romagna, to add Parmigiano Reggiano cheese inside for a better taste. Then the sauce is cooked until thickened and smooth.

So, the final thickness of the sauce depends from the proportion between roux and milk and the cooking time, so if you want a more liquid Besciamella reduce the amount of roux, otherwise add more roux.

Béchamel Sauce (Besciamella) and my foolproof lump-free process

Difficulty: easy
Preparation: 1 minute Cooking Time: 15-20 minutes
Yield: ≈4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 4 1/4 cups / 1 lt milk (preferably not skimmed)
  • 8 tbsp / 80 gr all-purpose flour (sifted)
  • 8 tbsp / 80 gr unsalted butter
  • 2-3 pinches freshly grated nutmeg
  • salt to taste (1/4-1/2 tsp)
  • Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (optional)

Note: these quantities of butter and flour produce a medium-thick Béchamel, suitable for Lasagne or as a base for other sauces (generally you can use one to three tablespoons each of flour and butter per cup of milk – e.g. one tbsp of each for a thin sauce while three tbsp of each for an extra thick sauce).

Instructions:

In a medium saucepan heat the milk with salt until little bubbling, then remove from heat or you can heat milk in microwave to save time (pre-heating the milk will reduce the time of stirring and controlling the sauce while cooking).

butter flour

In another pan, melt the butter until foaming. Remove from heat, add flour, stir well with a whisk or a spoon and return to heat (if you don’t remove from heat the pan, the flour will cook too fast and lumps can be too difficult to dissolve).

roux

Every minute (or when necessary) stir with a wooden spoon over a low heat until the roux is blond/light gold and smooth (to me it took about 10-12 minutes), paying attention to not over brown it.

roux 2

Quickly add the nutmeg and mix well (adding nutmeg in the roux instead of in the milk will avoid the nutmeg to clump on the skin of the milk), remove from heat.

roux nutmeg

With one movement put all the roux into the scalded milk (into a saucepan). Stir with a whisk until smooth.

roux milk

Return to heat and simmer Besciamella, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon (or a whisk), until sauce comes to a boil, thickens and coats the back of a wooden spoon (about 5 minutes).

Wait 2-3 minutes (to allow flour to cook better) and then remove from heat (this will prevent the sauce from taste floury).

If desired add Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and stir a little bit.

Your perfectly smooth Besciamella is ready to be used however you like! (use it immediately as long as it’s hot, so it’s easier to deal with).

besciamella authentic italian lasagne

Béchamel Sauce (Besciamella) and my foolproof lump-free process
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
A quick recipe and tips for a perfect foolproof lump-free sauce, Besciamella is a really simple and versatile sauce.
Author:
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 4¼ cups / 1 lt milk (preferably not skimmed)
  • 8 tbsp / 80 gr all-purpose flour (sifted)
  • 8 tbsp / 80 gr unsalted butter
  • 2-3 pinches freshly grated nutmeg
  • salt to taste (1/4-1/2 tsp)
  • Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (optional)
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan heat the milk with salt until little bubbling or you can heat milk in microwave to save time.
  2. Remove from heat.
  3. In another pan, melt the butter until foaming.
  4. Remove from heat, add flour, stir well with a whisk or a spoon and return to heat.
  5. Every minute (or when necessary) stir with a wooden spoon over a low heat until the roux is blond/light gold and smooth (to me it took about 10-12 minutes), paying attention to not over brown it.
  6. Quickly add the nutmeg and mix well.
  7. Remove from heat.
  8. With one movement put all the roux into the scalded milk (into a saucepan).
  9. Stir with a whisk until smooth.
  10. Return to heat and simmer Besciamella, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon (or a whisk), until sauce comes to a boil, thickens and coats the back of a wooden spoon (about 5 minutes).
  11. Wait 2-3 minutes (to allow flour to cook better) and then remove from heat (this will prevent the sauce from taste floury).
  12. If desired add Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and stir a little bit.

Best Authentic Bolognese Sauce (Ragú sauce): classic and my mom’s version

Best Authentic Bolognese Sauce (Ragú sauce)

Ragù (as Italians call it) or Bolognese is the top italian sauce for pasta.
It has simple ingredients, it’s easy even if you’re not very good in the kitchen, but people still think that it’s hard to make.
You just need 5-6 hours of your free time, and in these hours you can do whatever you want, just have a look and stir ragù every 2 hours, that’s it!


ragu bolognese best italian sauce meat

Italian Academy of Cuisine documented a recipe for “Ragù classico Bolognese” (classic Bolognese sauce), and subsequently recorded and deposited it with the Bologna Chamber of Commerce.

What I’m writing here is not this version, that you can find googling, but is a recipe that a real Bolognese housewife tought me and I think it’s better (there are slightest differences).
The other one is my mom’s version (that obviously I think it’s the best but… you tell me!), anyway every family has their own version, so wherever you eat it’s always different in some ways.
I prefer using the classic version over crostini toast or crispy polenta squares, while my mom’s ragù (I think) is better for pasta.

Ragù alla Bolognese is traditionally served with tagliatelle pasta (medium noodles made with eggs) and although the saying goes “serving spaghetti with Bolognese sauce is a sign of mediocrity in the understanding of Italian cuisine” I have to tell you that I usually put ragú over spaghetti and every kind of pasta (and I’m not the only one) because are really good too and I don’t always eat egg-pasta because it’s too caloric, so I think that it’s not a sign of mediocrity at all!
Anyway… eat spaghetti with ragù and call them “spaghetti al ragù” (spaghetti with ragù sauce) instead of “spaghetti Bolognese” (this term is pure invention and really shudder italians) 😀 .

The secret for a special ragù is the long cooking time.
It can be ready after 2 hours but it will be very bland, I suggest you to cook longer than 4 hours to have all the ingredients’ flavors mixed together and thus forming a delicious ragù (I always cook it for 6 hours, the best), trust me!

NEW UPDATE: click here for my Ultimate Best Authentic Bolognese Sauce – the Great Italian Sauce!

So let’s begin!

Difficulty: easy
Preparation: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 4-6 hours
Yield: 8 servings

ragu bolognese sauce ingredients

Classic Ragù Recipe – Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 300 grams or 10 ounces or 3 cups soffritto vegetables (150 grams or 5.30 ounces or 1 1/2 cups onion, 75 grams or 2.60 ounces or 3/4 cup ounces celery, 75 grams or 2.60 ounces or 3/4 cup carrot, finely chopped)
  • 600 grams / 21 ounces ground quality beef (94% lean if possible)
  • 2 little north-italian sausages grounded (with garlic, no fennel no anise no pepper flakes) – if you cannot find them just add 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup red wine (no bubbles)
  • 2 tbsp pure tomato paste dissolved in 2 cups of stock or water plus one bouillon cube (or 400 grams / 14 ounces tomato sauce plus 1/2 cup of stock or water plus one bouillon cube)

Classic Ragù Recipe – Instructions:

  1. Heat the oil and butter in a heavy, bottomed pot and fry vegetables for 6-8 minutes or until softened, scraping the bottom of the pan occasionally;
  2. add the meat, breaking it up with a fork, cook until it’s browned all over (5-10 minutes) and all the water, that the meat releases, is evaporated (this is very important for the final taste of the sauce!);
  3. add the wine and let the liquid reduce for 2-3 minutes or until you no longer smell alcohol; ragu brown white bolognese sauce
  4. add tomato paste/sauce, stock or water (plus one bouillon cube) and simmer ragù for at least 6 hours stirring occasionally (about every 1 1/2 hours).

Done! just 4 points to follow. It’s not complicated at all, so have a try and let me know what recipe do you prefer! (Below there’s my mum’s recipe).

authentic best bolognese sauce italian

My mom’s Ragù Recipe – Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 300 grams or 10 ounces or 3 cups soffritto vegetables (150 grams or 5.30 ounces or 1 1/2 cups onion, 75 grams or 2.60 ounces or 3/4 cup ounces celery, 75 grams or 2.60 ounces or 3/4 cup carrot, finely chopped)
  • 600 grams / 21 ounces ground quality beef (94% lean if possible)
  • 2 tbsp pure tomato paste dissolved in 2 cups of stock or water plus one bouillon cube (or 400 grams / 14 ounces tomato sauce plus 1/2 cup of stock or water plus one bouillon cube)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 bay leaf

My mom’s Ragù Recipe – Instructions:

  1. Heat the oil and butter in a heavy, bottomed pot and fry vegetables for 6-8 minutes or until softened, scraping the bottom of the pan occasionally;
  2. add the meat, breaking it up with a fork, cook until it’s browned all over (5-10 minutes) and all the water, that the meat releases, is evaporated (this is very important for the final taste of the sauce!);
  3. add skinned garlic cloves and bay leaf (remember to remove one clove after 2 hours of cooking time);
  4. add tomato paste/sauce, stock or water (plus one bouillon cube) and simmer ragù for at least 6 hours stirring occasionally (about every 1 1/2 hours).

authentic italian sauce ragu bolognese

Note: you can put Bolognese sauce in jars and freeze, so you can do a big batch that will last longer.

Best Authentic Bolognese Sauce (Ragú sauce): classic and my mom's version
 
Prep time
Cook time
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My mom's Bolognese sauce. Easy to make, just 4 steps!
Author:
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 300 grams or 10 ounces or 3 cups soffritto vegetables (150 grams or 5.30 ounces or 1½ cups onion, 75 grams or 2.60 ounces or ¾ cup ounces celery, 75 grams or 2.60 ounces or ¾ cup carrot, finely chopped)
  • 600 grams / 21 ounces ground quality beef (94% lean if possible)
  • 2 tbsp pure tomato paste dissolved in 2 cups of stock or water plus one bouillon cube (or 400 grams / 14 ounces tomato sauce plus ½ cup of stock or water plus one bouillon cube)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil and butter in a heavy, bottomed pot and fry vegetables for 6-8 minutes or until softened, scraping the bottom of the pan occasionally;
  2. Add the meat, breaking it up with a fork, cook until it's browned all over (5-10 minutes) and all the water, that the meat releases, is evaporated (this is very important for the final taste of the sauce!);
  3. Add skinned garlic cloves and bay leaf (remember to remove one clove after 2 hours of cooking time);
  4. Add tomato paste/sauce, stock or water (plus one bouillon cube) and simmer ragù for at least 6 hours stirring occasionally (about every 1½ hours).

Tuna Sauce for Pasta with Capers

EASY, QUICK PASTA SAUCE ITALIAN STYLE

This Tuna sauce recipe is one of my favourite authentic Italian sauces and it’s a time saver too! Just 30 minutes and you’re eating a dish of delicious pasta like you do at restaurants.


tuna sauce pasta italian best easy capers onion

If you have friends for dinner be prepared to give them the recipe, because they will surely ask you for it!

You can use every kind of pasta put I prefer using spaghetti, my favourites.

Tuna sauce for pasta

Difficulty: easy
Preparation: 5 minutes  Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 2 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 medium onion finely chopped (≈ 8 cm / 3′ Ø)
  • 2 full tsp vinegar-brined capers finely chopped, well-drained (if you have salt-packed capers soak them in cool water for about 15 minutes rinsing them in several changes of water or they will be too salty)
  • 150 gr / 5 oz good quality tuna canned in olive oil, drained
  • 1 1/2 tbsp tomato paste or tomato purè
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup water
  • salt to taste

Instructions:

Put olive oil in a saucepan, add onion and capers and sauté for 1 minute.
Dissolve tomato paste in the water then add to the saucepan.
Add tuna, salt to your taste and cook for about 30 minutes, until water has evaporated.

Before the sauce is finished, cook your favourite pasta “al dente”. If you don’t know how to cook pasta read my instructions here.

In a warm bowl mix cooked pasta with 1/2 tuna sauce. Serve pasta on a serving plate and put the remain sauce over.

Done! As simple as is!

So, enjoy your favourite shape of pasta with this awesome authentic Italian Tuna Sauce and a good glass of white wine! What shape of pasta would you like to use with this recipe?

Tuna Sauce for Pasta with Capers
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Authentic Italian Tuna sauce with Capers, a time saver and delicious recipe like those you eat in fine restaurants.
Author:
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • ¼ medium onion finely chopped (≈ 8 cm / 3' Ø)
  • 2 full tsp vinegar-brined capers finely chopped, well-drained (if you have salt-packed capers soak them in cool water for about 15 minutes rinsing them in several changes of water or they will be too salty)
  • 150 gr / 5 oz good quality tuna canned in olive oil, drained
  • 1½ tbsp tomato paste or tomato purè
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ¾ cup water
  • salt to taste
Instructions
  1. Put olive oil in a saucepan, add onion and capers and sauté for 1 minute.
  2. Dissolve tomato paste in the water then add to the saucepan.
  3. Add tuna, salt to your taste and cook for about 30 minutes, until water has evaporated.
  4. Before the sauce is finished, cook your favourite pasta "al dente".
  5. In a warm bowl mix cooked pasta with ½ tuna sauce.
  6. Serve pasta on a serving plate and put the remain sauce over.