Monday, August 6, 2012

Lighter Bolognaise

Now, by lighter I don't mean lower in fat, I just mean that it tastes lighter, on account of this bolognaise being based on poultry and not red meat. I made it because turkey mince was on sale and I thought I would give it a go, only in the recipe below I have specified chicken mince because I like chicken better. It turned out to make a very different meal to the usual bolognaise; instead of being very rich and meaty and savoury it was - well, the only word that I currently have in my head to describe it is lighter. And chicken-y. Sort of like crossing chicken soup with spaghetti bolognaise. I served it with seasoned, breaded courgette and discovered another way that I can enjoy this particular vegetable that I have never liked much.

Chicken Bolognaise

1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic
600 grams chicken mince
2 cans crushed tomatoes
3 cubes chicken stock
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon mixed herbs
1 tablespoon cornflour
1/2 cup cold water
Salt and pepper to taste

Now there's really not much to this recipe, and it's made just like every other bolognaise out there, so I'm going to try and keep this short and simple (for once).

To begin with, heat a couple of tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan. Add the onions and crush the garlic into the pan and cook for a few minutes, until the onion is soft and translucent.

Add the chicken mince and cook, stirring, until it is crumbly and browned all over. Then add the tomatoes, chicken stock, tomato paste, and mixed herbs and stir to combine. Mix together the cornflour and cold water separately and then slowly stir it into the rest of the sauce.

Keep the sauce simmering, stirring every now and then and seasoning with salt and pepper as it needs it. When it is thick and tastes good, serve it over hot spaghetti.

Crispy Breaded Courgette

2 large courgette
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup fine breadcrumbs
1 cube chicken stock
1 teaspoon mixed herbs
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Preheat the oven to about 200 degrees celsius. Slice the ends off of the courgette, then cut in half. Cut each piece lengthways into thick strips (sort of like chips).

Place the courgette into a plastic bag or a bowl and add all the remaining ingredients (crumble the chicken stock). Give the bag a good shake (or the bowl and good stir) until all of the courgette is well covered. Then tip the courgette into a roasting pan and sprinkle over any topping that is left in the bag.

Bake for about 30 minutes, until the courgette is really soft.

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