The secret ingredient professional chefs use when cooking meat dishes is the addition of Hoisen sauce. Any beef dish (stew, casserole) will benefit from just adding a tablespoon or so of Hoisen sauce. For a Bolognese sauce with a deep tomato flavour always use Italian tomatoes. Peeled whole tomatoes are best. If you can find San Marco tomatoes these are really splendid. The addition of a couple of cubes of Mushroom bouillon cubes is another secret flavour enhancer. Taste your sauce as it simmers away, add more seasoning if necessary. Be generous and you won’t be disappointed with the results, I promise.
BOLOGNESE MEAT SAUCE – enough to find the multitudes!
4 tbsp olive oil
1 lb ground beef
1 lb ground lean pork
1 onion chopped
4 nice fat garlic cloves
1 celery stalk
1 carrot chopped
salt and freshly ground pepper
2 cans Italian whole peeled tomatoes
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp Hoisen
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 tbsp dried oregano
2 mushroom bouillon cubes
1-3 tsp sugar
1/2 cup beef stock
Saute the beef and pork in a little of the olive oil until the meat changes colour. Drain off the liquid and fat and discard. Put the meat mixture into a large stock pot. You are making a big batch of sauce.
The best way to chop your vegetables is using a food processor. You want them finely chopped. First chop the onion and garlic and saute in a little olive oil. Sprinkle with some salt and the onion flakes. When the onions are translucent add them to your stock pot.
Now process the carrots and celery until finely chopped, and saute in a little olive oil for a few minutes. Add to the stock pot.
Add the two cans of tomatoes and smoosh the whole tomatoes to break them up. Add the tomato paste, the Hoisen sauce, oregano and thyme, and the beef stock. Sprinkle with a little sugar (tomatoes become quite acidic when they cook for more than 30 minutes).
Simmer for at least an hour or so uncovered. Your sauce will be come rich and thick.
The quantities makes a lot of sauce so you can freeze portions for later use. This sauce tastes better the next day so do try and make it a head.