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Meat Sauce in the Style of Bologna

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“Sugo alla Bolognese The classic sauce, our family favorite. This version only makes about 6 cups of sauce. The recipe can be doubled or tripled and will still come out beautifully. I freeze containers of this so I always have some on hand. The longer this is simmered, the better it is, so don't skimp on cooking time. I usually end up satisfied with the color and consistency after 5 to 6 hours.”
3hrs 10mins
6 cups

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Process the onion, carrot and celery until the consistency is almost a paste, but not quite.
  2. Heat the oil in a 4 quart pan over medium heat.
  3. Stir in processed vegetables and cook for around 5 minutes.
  4. Push the vegetables to the side of the pan and add the chicken livers.
  5. Cook until the livers are done through and stir them together with the vegetables.
  6. Add the ground meats, stirring to break them up.
  7. Cook until the juices coming from the meat have evaporated.
  8. Push everything to sides of pan, pour in a little more olive oil and turn heat to high.
  9. When oil begins to sizzle, add the tomato paste.
  10. Stir the paste around until it begins to brown and gives off a caramelly-tomato aroma.
  11. Turn heat back down to medium and deglaze the caramelized paste with the red wine.
  12. Pull all other ingredients back into center of pan and stir.
  13. Pour in the tomatoes, juice and bay leaves.
  14. Stir well and bring to a boil.
  15. Turn heat down just to a good simmer and cover.
  16. Cook covered, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has become very dense and is a dark mahogany color, at least 2 hours.
  17. Add water or more red wine if the sauce is sticking.
  18. There should be a layer of fat risen to the top near the end of the cooking process.
  19. Remove this if you want, but traditionally it is reincorporated.
  20. To make your sauce very smooth, put it through a food mill after cooking.

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