You know those bloggers who meal prep entire MONTHS in advance?
I have a topsy-turvy love-hate relationship with them. One the one hand I would love to have a giant chest freezer full of meals ready to just pop in the oven and move on with my life. On the other hand, I would have to set aside entire weekends just to meal prep and stay ahead of the curve. Ehhhh not really my idea of relaxing or recharging on a weekend.
But I do really want all my meals completed in advance and ready to go for the busy weekdays.
The struggle is real folks.
So, for now, I’ll give up on my dream regarding meals pre-planned months in advance and instead focus on sanity-saving recipes.
Like this magic Slow Cooked Bolognaise recipe.
Make one giant batch of sauce and you will have dinner for the night, leftovers for lunch tomorrow, and enough to have a batch ready to thaw in the freezer if need be.
This recipe is also incredible for utilising those dying bits of produce in the bottom of your fridge. I encourage you to add everything that will go bad within the next 3 day to this recipe. Leftover spinach in the fridge? Chuck it in. Limp Celery? Chuck it in. Languishing red pepper? Chuck it in.
Trust me. This is magic sauce.
It all starts with a bunch of veggies and bacon. I highly recommend you chop all of the veggies the night before. And if you happen to have a food processor with a slicing disc, I would just use that. Because #lazyrecipe
First things first, start frying up the bacon. I love my cast iron, but you can certainly use anything reasonable as a substitute.
Then throw in all of the onions with the bacon and let those get a good caramelization going. I know caramelizing onions can be a pain, but it is a really important flavor-step. If you are short on time, just skip this one step. The sauce won’t be life changing good, but it will still be plenty of awesome.
Now add the caramelized onion and bacon mixture to the crockpot. Dump in all the other ingredients EXCEPT for the baking soda. Baking Soda is to be added when the sauce is complete.
Oh and if you happen to have a Quince and Dotti. Secure the cats from the crockpot at all times.
That’s it. Once the slow cooked bolognaise is finished. Toss ½ with pasta sauce. Put the other ½ in the freezer for your next emergency meal. Boom!
Or you can use this bolognaise to make a kick-ass lasagna. Nom-nom-nom 🙂
Slow Cooked Bolognaise
- 4 Strips of Bacon
- 2 Large Onions Diced
- 4 Large Carrots Diced
- 6 Stalks of Celery Diced
- Optional: Any additional veggies you prefer (I always use Mushrooms)
- 4-6 Cloves 4-6 Cloves of Garlic I use 6, but I like it really garlic-y
- 4 Tablespoons Tomato Paste About one of those tiny cans. You know the one
- 4 Small (500gram) Cans Diced Tomatoes
- 4 Cups Chicken Broth Beef will also work if you prefer
- 1/4 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
- Bay Leaves
- 2 teaspoons Oregano
- 2 teaspoons Sage
- 2 teaspoons Basil
- Salt to Taste
- Optional: ¼ Teaspoon of Baking Soda
Cut Bacon into small Pieces. Over medium heat gently cook the bacon, rendering as much fat off of the Bacon as possible.
Add the onions on top of the now rendered bacon. Cook slowly until thoroughly caramelized (Approximately 30 minutes).
Move the bacon/onion mixture to your favorite crockpot. Add all of the other ingredients EXCEPT for the baking soda.
**If prepping for the day before. Take the ceramic insert out of the crockpot, cover, and place in the fridge for overnight.
Cook the bolognaise on low for 8-12 hours.
Taste the sauce. If it is too sharp add the baking soda ¼ of a teaspoon at a time. It will bubble do not be afraid! Add salt to taste.
**If you prefer a smoother sauce, use an immersion blender and blend to desired texture.
Extra sauce can be frozen for up to 3 months.