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Mum’s Bolognese Sauce

by Martha Swift

Make your next bolognese a bit special with this simple Italian recipe from Martha Swift. The flavours of sun-dried tomatoes, white wine and smoked bacon work perfectly with the beef.


My mum, Caroline Moorehead, is an amazing cook so you can always be sure of eating something delicious if she is in the kitchen. She is not really a baker, although she does have a very sweet tooth, so it is ironic I have ended up running a bakery. I was lucky to spend a lot of time in Italy as I was growing up so I have always loved Italian food, and my mum has always cooked a lot of Italian dishes. This sauce really is one of the best bolognese sauces you can eat, simply served with spaghetti and freshly grated Parmesan. My youngest daughter is quite a fussy daughter but even she loves this sauce!

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approx 500-600g minced beef
2 slices of streaky bacon (chopped)
a generous amount of olive oil
2 chopped onions
3 tsp chopped garlic
1 tin of vine cherry tomatoes (or fresh)
2 tsp tomato puree
2 tsbp sun-dried tomatoes
1 carrot, chopped finely
1/3rd glass white wine
stock cube
finely chopped parsley (incuding stalks)
1 bay leaf


1. Fry the bacon in the olive oil, then add the onions and garlic and fry until soft.

2. Add the minced beef and fry until evenly brown. 

3. Add the wine and stir until liquid has evaporated.

4. Add all the other ingredients and simmer for approx one and a half hours, stirring occasionally and making sure that there is enough liquid.

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