Stray from the traditional and add mushrooms to spaghetti bolognese for additional umami flavor.
This Spaghetti Bolognese was one of my mother’s signature dishes that I learned to make at a very young age. However, over the years I made minor changes to her original recipe, which happens to be the classic Spaghetti Bolognese recipe that you would find in an Italian cookbook. Two of those changes were (1) I omitted the bacon because I do not have access to the kind of bacon I like on the island, and (2) I added mushrooms because I like the umami flavor that they give to the final dish. Also, I love how nutritious and hearty they are. However, if you are a stickler for the traditional Spaghetti Bolognese, you are more than welcome to add bacon and take out the mushrooms out of this recipe.
On a final note, do yourself a favor, and open a bottle of Italian red wine (such as Chianti) to serve with this classic. I think, it truly completes the dish and adds an additional depth of flavor.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large or 2 small onion, chopped
- 1 green chili chopped
- 1 14 ounces can of diced tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1- pound ground beef 90-10%
- 8 ounces white button or baby bella mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
- 3 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 bunch thyme tied in a bundle
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ cup red wine
- 1 cup chicken stock
- ½ cup fresh basil roughly chopped
- Parmesan cheese
- 1 pound 16 oz. dried spaghetti or linguini
- Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven (or any other heavy bottom pot) in medium heat. Add onion and chili pepper. Cook until wilted, 8-10 minutes.
- Stir in the tomatoes and tomato paste. Cook, stirring frequently for 5 minutes.
- Add in the ground beef. Using a wooden spoon break it into smaller chunks. Cook, stirring frequently, until it is browned, 7-8 minutes.
- Stir in the mushrooms and cook for 5 more minutes.
- Add the garlic, bundle thyme, salt, pepper, bay leaf, red wine, and chicken stock. Give everything a stir. Bring it to a simmer.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low, put the lid on, and let it to cook for 20-25 minutes, making sure to stir occasionally.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil and cook the spaghetti according to the instructions on its package.
- Once the spaghetti is ready, drain it in a colander.
- Discard the thyme bundle and the bay leaf from the Bolognese sauce.
- Add drained pasta into the sauce. Stir it all together making sure that the pasta is generously coated with the sauce.
- Stir in the fresh basil and top it off with grated Parmesan cheese.
Aysegul is the cook, writer, and photographer behind foolproofliving.com. She spends her days creating recipes from seasonal ingredients on a small island in the Caribbean. Other than cooking and baking, her biggest passion in life is photography. She also is a firm believer that if you know how to read, you know how to cook.