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I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Sunday, August 07, 2011

Spaghettini Bolognese

Spaghetti has always been one of my favourite dishes to order when dining out followed by steak or fish so depending on where we are dining, it tends to be one of those three entrée choices for me.  Oh, don't me wrong as I do like to discover different entrées, it's just that those are my favourites.  Besides within the three categories there is a wide variety to discover.  During our recent visit to Niagara Falls we ate at East Side Mario's on Fallsview Ave.  This is a chain restaurant specializing in Italian food.  The food is average and reasonably priced.  The restaurant is kid friendly but our service was below average.  That could have been due to the holiday weekend however, if anything a holiday weekend is the time to shine as it is a wonderful opportunity to impress new guests gaining repeat customers.

I ordered the Spaghettini Bolognese with the all-you-can-eat soup or salad and garlic homeloaf ($14.99).  Bolognese sauce originated in Bologna, Italy.  It is a meat-based sauce with a small amount of tomato concentrate.  It is not a heavy, aromatic sauce like spaghetti with meat sauce.

The East Side Mario's version was borderline bland.  It was mixed with cooked spaghetti (not spaghettini) topped with chunks of cooked tomato.  The waiter added fresh ground Parmesan cheese.  It was a nice but not spectacular dish.  Spaghettini bolognese is an easy dish to duplicate at home.  The nice thing about a bolognese sauce is it takes few ingredients.  You could easily base it on condensed soup if desired. 
amounts of celery, carrot and onion. Prosciutto, mortadella, or porcini fresh mushrooms when in season may be added to the ragù to further enrich the sauce. Milk is frequently used in the early stages of cooking to render the meat flavours more delicate but cream is very rare in the everyday recipe and only a very little would be used. According to Marcella Hazan in "The Classic Italian Cookbook", the longer Ragù alla Bolognese cooks the better; a 5- or 6-hour simmer is not unusual.[2]

The people of Bologna traditionally serve their famous ragù with freshly made tagliatelle (tagliatelle alla bolognese) and their traditionally green lasagne. It should be noted that the Italians do not pair Ragù alla Bolognese with the pasta shape spaghetti. Wider shaped pasta are thought to hold up to the heavy sauce better.

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