Bolognese is a total comfort food to me. At the restaurant, bolognese it is a "family meal" staple because of how quick and delicious it is. Family meal is the staff meal put together for the kitchen and front-of-house staff at a restaurant. Having made family meal numerous times, I can tell you that time and ease are of the essence!
The recipe below takes more time than normal however, because I included a homemade pappardelle recipe in here. The fresh pasta adds such a nice touch - if you have the time to do it, I definitely recommend. There is a video here as well so you can see the method in action. Happy cooking!
11 oz AP flour
1 tsp salt
1-2 tbsp water
1 tbsp olive oil
1 shallot, small dice
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 large carrot, small dice
1 celery stalk, small dice
1 lb ground beef
3 tbsp tomato paste
salt & pepper to taste
1 1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
In a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment, combine all ingredients for the pasta dough: egg, flour, salt, and water (as needed).
Mix until the dough is mostly combined, remove the dough and place onto a clean work surface. It's okay if you have pieced of flour still not mixed into the dough yet.
Begin kneading the dough using the back of your wrist until your dough looks more smooth. You can add a little more flour if the dough is sticking to the surface. Knead for about 5 minutes, then cover with plastic wrap and rest in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes.
While the dough is resting, start the bolognese. In a large skillet on medium heat, add the olive oil then carrot, shallot and celery. Let them become a little soft for a few minutes, then add the garlic so it doesn't burn.
Next, add the ground beef and start to brown for about 8 minutes.
Add tomato paste and combine thoroughly. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Pour in milk, stir and turn the heat to a low simmer for aprox. 20 minutes
Meanwhile, remove dough from the fridge and cut into four quarters.
For this recipe, only one half of the pasta dough is plenty - save the rest for another recipe!
Using a pasta sheeter, gradually create thin sheets of dough. Start with the first 5 runs through the sheeter on the thickest setting. After each, fold together the two end pieces to create a "book fold" this helps the dough get even smoother.
Gradually go from the thickest setting to the second to last (thinnest) setting. You will likely have to cut your sheets in half to shorten the length midway through.
To cut the pappardelle shape, carefully roll the pasta sheets and cut 1/2 inch pieces. Unroll and you'll have pappardelle!
Hold the pasta on a sheet tray with a little flour. Cook the pasta in salted, boiling water for 3-4 minutes or until it floats to the top of the pot. Once cooked, add right into the skillet with the bolognese, add some freshly grated Parmesan cheese, and serve.